Sheffield Wednesday have 24 hours to finalise squad for League One title run-in

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A battle at Oakwell provided a twist in Sheffield Wednesday’s pursuit of the League One title in what will be another busy week for the club.

The Owls make the trip to Forest Green Rovers on Sunday hoping to jump back to winning ways having gone two games without a win for the first time this year. Focus from Darren Moore quickly shifted from what he described as a ‘self-inflicted’ 4-2 defeat and indeed from a blunt end to a record-breaking 23-match unbeaten run in league football.

Preparations for the trip to The New Lawn – the first in Wednesday’s history – will begin in earnest as they always do.

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But before then comes the deadline for all EFL to finalise the registration of their squads for the run-in of the season. With 10 matches left the title race is still very much in the Owls’ hands, with games in hand on the majority of teams around them.

Sheffield Wednesday's Darren Moore as they faced Barnsley. (Steve Ellis)Sheffield Wednesday's Darren Moore as they faced Barnsley. (Steve Ellis)
Sheffield Wednesday's Darren Moore as they faced Barnsley. (Steve Ellis)

With only weeks left in the season, any notion of a free agent addition to help steer them out of a mini-injury crisis seems fanciful given the steadfast stance of Darren Moore over the time it takes for freebies to prove their fitness after time out. The free agent market looks sparse of viable options regardless.

One thing that Wednesday may look at is the registration of some of their younger players in what would be a ‘belt and braces’ approach to thickening out their squad.

Academy players must be registered for first team action ahead of the deadline, which comes at 5pmt on Thursday as per long-standing EFL laws.

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Law 44 as stated on the EFL website reads in part: “The fourth Thursday in March is the traditional ‘transfer deadline day’ and remains in place to ensure Clubs cannot add to their squad for the final remaining fixtures of a Season thus impacting on the integrity of the competition in those final stages.

“Academy Players will not be caught by this restriction in respect of non-first team matches. However, Clubs will not be permitted to register an Academy Player after this date and then utilise him in League Matches.”

It seems likely that Wednesday’s fairly exhaustive current list, which includes 18 ‘Under-21 Contract Players’, will be the list they go with.

The Owls’ current list of EFL-registered players in full – both senior list and under-21 list eligible for League One matches – senior goalkeepers do not need to be registered:

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Senior: Adeniran, Bakinson, Bannan, Brown, Byers, Famewo, Flint, Gregory, Hunt, Ihiekwe, Iorfa, James, Johnson, Palmer, Paterson, Smith, Vaulks, Wilks, Windass

Under-21: Alimi-Adetoro, Ashman, Cadamarteri, Charles, Cook, Davidson, Dele-Bashiru, Dunn, Durrant, Dutra Aguas, Fusire, Galvin, Glover, Hall, Jackson, Sesay, Shipston, Trueman