Sheffield Wednesday: Gray looks for Madine boost

Gary Madine was 'like a kid in a sweetshop' on his first day back with the Owls
Gary Madine was 'like a kid in a sweetshop' on his first day back with the Owls
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Stuart Gray hopes that Gary Madine will be like a new signing once he has regained his fitness.

The Owls boss is pleased to welcome back the striker after his release from prison.

But the first step is a 10-day fitness regime before Gray even begins to consider him for selection.

If he does get back in the team then the Owls still face a payment to Carlisle linked to appearances, as part of the deal that brought him to Hillsborough - an issue that first surfaced last season.

Madine warmed up with the squad yesterday but then worked with the fitness coach.

Gray said: “It was nice to see him back. If anything it looks like a new signing for us. He was like a kid in a sweet shop. We have to get him up and running as quickly as possible, because we know the goals he can provide.

“What we can’t do is put the pressure on him to get to the intensity we want; he’s not had the proper exercise.

“It’s probably going to be a week to 10 days before can join in fully with the squad and come into mind for selection.

“We just feel he deserves a second chance. He’s champing at the bit; he’s grateful and remorseful. We’ve given him an opportunity to prove his worth and his fitness.

“We know he’s got a goal in him, whether he comes on for five minutes or starts a game.

“We’re excited and confident and pleased he’s back. Has he grown up? Ony time will tell.

“I think he wants to repay the faith shown in him by the club, the chairman and the fans. I think he deserves a second chance. The ball is in his court.”