‘Like a new signing’ Sheffield Wednesday man could make big return after 154-day wait

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Darren Moore was at pains to stamp out questions surrounding injuries at Sheffield Wednesday heading into their clash with Exeter City this weekend.

Press conferences in recent weeks have been dominated by enquiries around various players, with the Owls’ injury list fluctuating between ‘long’ and ‘very long’ depending on the game in focus.

Moore did open up enough to describe Akin Famewo as ‘fine’ after he was taken off in the second half of Wednesday’s 2-1 win at Bristol Rovers on Tuesday evening.

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And though mystery hangs over the likes of Josh Windass and Mallik Wilks, there is good news on the availability of experienced defender Michael Ihiekwe, who played over an hour of the under-21s’ 1-1 draw with QPR in midweek.

Owls Michael Ihiekwe with Poshs Joe Ward   Pic Steve EllisOwls Michael Ihiekwe with Poshs Joe Ward   Pic Steve Ellis
Owls Michael Ihiekwe with Poshs Joe Ward Pic Steve Ellis

“Icky came through the under-21s game which was great,” Moore told The Star. “He needed to get those football-specific movements.

“He’s trained the last couple of days with no reaction. You need to test out to see that you don’t have any reaction and he hasn’t which is great. He’ll be part of the squad.”

Ihiekwe was one of several experienced additions brought into the squad in the summer. Having not played since a home win over Shrewsbury Town in November the Scouse defender would provide a huge boost should he play tomorrow after a 154-day knee lay-off.

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“He’s huge for the group, just for his experience and know-how,” Moore said. “For Icky, having not been able to enjoy playing his football having suffered that injury, to get him back is almost like a new signing in some respects.

“We’re pleased to have him back on board.”