Why Sheffield Wednesday may need to bring in a new goalkeeper before the summer transfer window shuts

Sheffield Wednesday are considering their goalkeeping options after an injury setback to Joe Wildsmith.

Thursday, 25th July 2019, 14:29 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th July 2019, 16:59 pm

Academy graduate Wildsmith faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines after suffering a knee injury in their friendly against VfB Lubeck. The 23-year-old sustained the knock in the second half of the Owls' 1-0 defeat at Stadion Lohmuhle in Germany.

Lee Bullen, the caretaker Wednesday boss, said Wildsmith could "potentially" be out of action for three months.

"He has damaged his posterior cruciate ligament," Bullen told The Star. "He dived at the feet of one of their (Lubeck's) strikers in a 50/50 challenge.

Joe Wildsmith faces a spell on the sidelines through injury

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"Their striker was half a second late and caught Joe slap bang on the knee and unfortunately he has a little tear there which is going to need a fair bit of rest."

Wildsmith's injury leaves the Owls with two recognised senior goalkeepers in Keiren Westwood and Cameron Dawson heading into the 2019/20 season, which gets under way in just over a week.

Bullen, who has put his hat in the ring to replace Steve Bruce as boss, said: "It is a big blow to Joe because he has been doing really well in pre-season. He has been outstanding and we are lucky enough to have three really, really good goalkeepers.

"But it (the goalkeeping situation) is an aspect we are going to have to address as a club after Joe's injury. We may have to look potentially at bringing someone in or look at the academy and see what is there.

"But that is a discussion for us to have with the chairman and we will see if we can get the right strength in depth there.

"With Joe out for a while, we need to make sure we have adequate cover because all it takes is another silly little knock which injures somebody for a couple of weeks and we are sort of left a little bit high and dry.

"We have to be very careful with that situation and not be left short."

Wildsmith has slipped behind Westwood and Dawson in the pecking order for a starting berth in the past 12 months. He made just two appearances last term, with his last Owls outing coming against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the League Cup in August.