Sheffield Wednesday are planning to round off their pre-season programme with a high-profile home friendly against Villarreal, The Star can reveal.
It is understood the Owls have been in discussions with their Spanish counterparts for some time over arranging a warm-up match.
And although there are still a few finer details to iron out before the fixture can be officially rubber-stamped, Wednesday officials are optimistic of finalising the friendly.
Should everything go according to plan, the fixture is set to take place at Hillsborough on Saturday, July 28. It is likely to be the Owls’ final warm-up match before the new season kicks off on August 4.
In recent seasons, the Owls have entertained the likes of Newcastle United, Portuguese giants Benfica and Rangers at S6.
Villarreal, who secured Europa League qualification last term, finishing fifth in La Liga behind Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid and Valencia, are already due to face English opposition this summer. They are poised to take on Premier League newcomers Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux in a pre-season friendly a week after their proposed visit to South Yorkshire.
Midfielder Santi Cazorla, a free agent having left Arsenal at the end of the last campaign, is expected to spend pre-season with Villarreal as the Spanish international strives to regain full fitness following his Achilles operation.
As for Jos Luhukay’s side, they intend to lock horns with Eredivisie side NAC Breda in a behind-closed-doors friendly on July 21.
Wednesday have already confirmed pre-season friendlies against Lincoln City and Mansfield Town next month. Jos Luhukay’s men will travel to Sincil Bank on Friday July 13. Tickets are priced at £10 adults, £5 concession (60+/disabled), £5 young adults (18-21) and juniors £2.
Wednesday then head to Mansfield on Tuesday July 24, with tickets priced at £10 adults and £5 concessions (over-65s, under-18s).