Sheffield Wednesday: New signings, new contracts and free agents as transfer window officially opens
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Wednesday are expected to have another busy window as Darren Moore works to bring in a whole host of new faces for the 2022/23 season, and he’s hoping to build a squad capable of pushing for automatic promotion.
With the window up and running, we had a look at where things are at for the Owls, and what’s been said so far.
How long is the transfer window open for?
The transfer window officially opens today – June 10th – as teams get to work registering new players for the 2023 campaign, and it will run up until September 1st when it will slam shut.
Wednesday, and any other clubs so inclined, will still be able to register free agents that haven’t found new clubs after that date, as long as they were declared a free agent before the deadline on September 1st.
For those wondering, the winter window will, as usual, open on January 1st 2023 and end on January 31st 2023.
What has Darren Moore said so far?
There’s been nothing official at this point in time in terms of incomings, but Moore has said that ‘positive’ talks have been had, though admitted that competition is ‘fierce’.
Speaking to the club’s YouTube channel, the Wednesday boss said, “It’s underway, it has to happen in the background… There are small frustrations with people being away on holiday - which you can understand - but some of the talks have been positive and some of the competition out there is fierce.
“The type and level of players that we’re competing for, they’re not short of others from one or two others. We have to try our best, and hopefully we can get the right players and the right blend into the club this season and hopefully push us on again.
“It’s all part of the process. The talks have to go on, and sometimes you feel like you’re going nowhere with it, but you have to have those talks with the clubs, the players and the representatives - there are so many talks that have to take place.”
Who needs to be replaced?
As things stand there are 10 senior players who are moving on having been a part of things last season…
Harlee Dean, Lewis Gibson, Tyreece John-Jules, Florian Kamberi, Bailey Peacock-Farrell, Olamide Shodipo and Jordan Storey have all returned to their parent clubs, while it was announced that Sam Hutchinson, Chey Dunkley and Saido Berahino would not have their contracts extended.
It means that Moore has plenty of gaps to fill as he prepares for the upcoming campaign, and there could be more to come if Massimo Luongo, Jack Hunt, Joe Wildsmith and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing all fail to agree new deals.
What are they looking for?
With the amount of exits in mind, Wednesday are looking to effectively bolster every part of the field, even though they are thought to be taking on a ‘quality over quantity’ approach.
Centre backs are the number one priority at this point in time, however the club are also on the lookout for a new goalkeeper, a couple of wide players and somebody to help lead the line with Lee Gregory up front.
Splashing the cash?
Wednesday can spend money again after all the embargoes and transfer restrictions from recent windows were done away with.
Does that mean that they’ll be throwing millions of pounds around? It seems unlikely.
Chansiri has said that he’ll support Moore as much as he can and that transfer fees would be available ‘within reason’, but it feels like the club’s approach has changed to a point where big transfer fees are a thing of the past.
Wednesday are prepared to pay for players though – their pursuits of Mallik Wilks and Jayden Stockley show that – and it’s thought that they’ll be offering wages that are still more than a lot of other clubs in League One.
Who’s been linked so far?
Well, there’s been quite a few! Which is no surprise given the amount of exits at Hillsborough and how wide Moore will be wanting to cast his net.
Wilks of Hull City and AFC Wimbledon’s Ben Heneghan are the two that have had the strongest links so far, one as a transfer and one as a free agent, however nothing has yet been finalised.
Wednesday’s hunt for centre backs has also seen them keeping tabs on Jack Tucker at Gillingham and former loanee, Dean, while Shrewsbury Town’s Marko Marosi is a goalkeeper that’s been linked with the club.
Up top, Stockley and Rotherham United’s Michael Smith have been mentioned as potential options at the club, and in midfield there has been Brendan Wiredu at Colchester United and outgoing Cardiff City man, Will Vaulks.
Any other outgoings?
Aside from the aforementioned players who are out of contract and may not agree new deals for the 2022/23 campaign, it seems as though Moore is keen to keep the squad together.
Wednesday have already batted away interest in attacker, Josh Windass, from Club Atlético Talleres in Argentina, and interest in Gregory is likely to go nowhere given the player’s desire to stick around at Hillsborough.
There could well be a number of loans over the summer as the club look to send out some of their younger players in search of regular football as part of their continued development – though which ones will likely be decided once preseason has got underway.