Sheffield Wednesday: Lees backs stand-in goalies

Owls defender Tom Lees
Owls defender Tom Lees
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Centre-back Tom Lees believes Sheffield Wednesday can cope without influential goalkeeper Keiren Westwood as they bid to get back to winning ways at home to Reading tonight.

Owls number one Westwood will sit-out the Championship encounter, having suffered an injury in Saturday’s defeat away to Ipswich Town. It is understood Westwood, who was taken to hospital, bruised his kidney.

Lees admits the Republic of Ireland international’s absence is a blow but is confident Wednesday can adapt.

Boss Carlos Carvalhal refused to confirm yesterday who will deputise for Westwood, although academy graduate Joe Wildsmith is in pole position to step in, with Lewis Price having only recently resumed first-team training following appendix surgery.

Lees told The Star: “It is a big loss for us. Any team is bound to miss a keeper of Keiren’s quality so we just hope he gets fit soon and can comeback and perform like he has done. But I have got full confidence in whoever plays whether it is Lewis [Price] or Joe [Wildsmith].

“Lewis has got a lot of experience so hopefully he will fit in straight away while Joe is a very talented goalie.”

Wildsmith only made his Owls debut last week.

“I have been very impressed with how Joe has gone about it and he is very calm for his age,” said Lees. “He is confident in his own ability.”