Sheffield Wednesday: Lee Bullen speaks out on Lucas Joao exit rumours amid links to Bristol City and Huddersfield Town
Sheffield Wednesday coach Lee Bullen has discussed the future of striker Lucas Joao, following reports that the Portuguese striker had handed in a transfer request earlier in the week.
News of Joao’s apparent desire to leave Hillsborough sparked suggestions that Huddersfield Town and Bristol City were both eager to acquire the player, who has scored ten league goals for his side last season.
Speaking to BBC Radio Sheffield, the Owls coach was quizzed on the 25-year-old's future, and said: “I spoke to him. I don’t believe he has (handed in a transfer request).
“But again I’m reading social media and everything like that. There’s always going to be speculation when one club (Wednesday) has six strikers. It doesn’t hold any fears for me, that.”
Certainly, the idea of Joao being snapped up by Huddersfield is an unlikely one – it would be somewhat of a sideways move for the Portugal international, and the Terriers already have a number of strikers on their books, including summer signing Josh Koroma, who joined from Leyton Orient last month.
Bristol City are in the process of a major squad overhaul at present, selling the likes of starlet Lloyd Kelly and Mo Eisa, but bringing in six new faces – including Tomas Kalas and Jay Dasilva from Chelsea.
The Robins' star striker Famara Diedhiou has been repeatedly linked with an Ashton Gate exit throughout the summer transfer window, and Joao could certainly add some much-needed firepower to the South West side's front-line.
As Bullen rightly points out, the Owls are somewhat overloaded with options upfront at the moment, and are likely to trim their attacking sextet before the new season begins.
However, there have been no reports of any official bids from interested parties, and Joao continues to play an important part in Wednesday’s pre-season preparations.