Sheffield Wednesday skipper expecting big summer
As one of the longest-serving players at Sheffield Wednesday, Tom Lees has seen many players come and go from Hillsborough, and he admits that it’s always sad to see the end of a cycle.
Lees has been a regular for the Owls since making the switch from Leeds United back in 2014, playing a massive role for the club as they twice narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League, and has made more than 230 appearances in his time there.
Now though, with the Wednesday side that reached the Play-Off final against Hull City in 2016 likely to be all but completely disbanded in the coming summer, the 29-year-old is anticipating plenty of changes ahead.
Speaking to the Star, Lees said, Off the pitch you create strong bonds with people, they become your friends, not just your teammates… You do form close relationships with people, so it’s obviously sad (when they leave).
“But on the other side of it, you need to look at the fact that that team has had two or three opportunities to try and get up into the Premier League, so you can understand why change happens and new players come in.
“A lot of those players that have been here for three, four, five years, have given a lot to the club and really tried to get them promoted.”
Lees, who has played 29+ Championship games in all of the last five seasons, went on to say, “The last couple of seasons things have gotten a bit tricky, and that squad started to disband. That happens in the cycles of teams, sometimes you have to start over again to build yourself back up and go again.
“It’s almost like a new cycle at Wednesday, and a new squad is going to have to be formed because we’ve got so many players that are out of contract. So I imagine it’ll be a big change in the summer - we’re going to have to bring in players or re-sign them to be part of whatever comes next.”
Lees has scored nine goals for Wednesday during his time at Hillsborough, and is among the most utilised players in recent Owls history.