FANS wondered whether Sheffield Wednesday had slipped up when Preston, fresh out of the Championship, snapped up striker Juvhel Tsoumou after he was rejected by the Owls.
But his release by the Lilywhites has cast a fresh and favourable light on Wednesday’s decision.
A surprise was sprung when, without any previous publicity, he was named as a trialist in the Owls team for the showpiece final friendly against Stoke last year at a time when the club were in urgent need of new strikers.
He played for the whole game but within a few days Gary Megson confirmed that the club would not be signing him. Although Megson never gave a precise reason in public, the decision was in fact based on the then manager’s assessment of him as a player.
A week later Tsoumou was signed by Preston on a two-year contract - a bit of an eye-opener when the Lilywhites were third in the promotion betting, behind Huddersfield and Wednesday.
But he made only five League One starts for an outfit who finished 15th, spent the last three months of last season in League Two with Plymouth, and he was transfer-listed in May. There were no offers and his contract has been cancelled by mutual consent.
Tsoumou came to Hillsborough on trial as a 20-year-old Congo-born striker from German club Aachen.
The Owls then had only Gary Madine and Clinton Morrison up front but were to add Chris O’Grady, Ryan Lowe, David McGoldrick on a brief loan and finally Nile Ranger on loan from Newcastle.
Wednesday once again hope to sign a striker before the season starts.
Meanwhile, the club’s book, Wednesday Rising, published to commemorate promotion, is now on general sale at the Owls Megastore or at www.swfc.co.uk/shop, at £14.99.