What Sheffield Wednesday’s embargo means for Marvin Johnson and Momo Diaby

Sheffield Wednesday are back under embargo once again, a situation that has led to questions about their currently unregistered players.
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It was revealed on Friday evening that because of ‘amounts due to HMRC’, Wednesday have been embargoed by the English Football League, meaning that they’re unable to register any new players while that remains the case.

Right now it doesn’t affect Danny Röhl too much given that the transfer window is closed and the Owls only have one spot left in their 25-man squad anyway, but a question that many have asked is what it means for the senior players at the club who are already on the books but as yet unregistered.

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On the page explaining the terms of EFL embargoes it is stated that ‘clubs under Embargo with 23 or more players of Professional Standing cannot register players’, however it’s understood that that doesn’t take into consideration players already on the club’s books.

With Johnson, who is now back training with the first team under Röhl, and Diaby, who is out injured, it’s thought that the Owls can apply to register one of them to fill up their 25-man allocation – though EFL guidance suggests that the timing and embargo means that it would need approval first. Whether permission would be granted would ultimately be a decision for the League.

Regarding changes to the squad list outside a window, the EFL’s regulations state the league will only consider new additions where:

the Club’s current Squad List contains less than the maximum number of Players permitted to be included on the Squad List and the Club wishes to add an Out of Registration Player or another Player registered with the Club but not currently included on the Squad List, or

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in other truly exceptional circumstances to include but not be limited to those set out in the note from EFL Player Admin found on the EFL Portal.

It’s also worth noting that players under the age of 21 as of January 2023 do not need to be included in the squad list to be eligible to play in league matches, meaning that the embargo doesn’t effect the likes of Bailey Cadamarteri and Joey Phuthi if the chance to push them up into the Championship arises.