June 14, 2024

Sheffield Wednesday’s Michael Ihiekwe knows that the summer will bring change to the club, but is hoping they can make momentum into next season.

The experienced centre back returned from injury to play a big role for the Owls in the latter part of the season, regaining his spot in the heart of defence and putting in an especially strong performance at Wembley in the play-off final win over Barnsley.

Now, with a number of players on the move as their contracts expire, he says that he’s happy that he was part of such an ‘unbelievable’ group of players – even though things will look different by the time he’s back in for preseason next month.

Speaking to Yorkshire Live at last week’s civic reception, ‘Icky’ said, “It’s part and parcel of football. It’s just life and that’s why it’s so important we all enjoy it because we’ve all earned it as a squad. Even the lads who haven’t played as much, we need to enjoy these moments. Football players come and go, so these moments need to be relished.

“It’s an unbelievable group. I was obviously injured for a large part but being around the changing room when there’s been ups and downs, the manager has always made us believe.”

And the former Rotherham United man is looking to Sunderland for inspiration as they plan for their first season back in the Championship, suggesting that they can try and emulate them by going for a second consecutive top six finish after promotion last month.

Next year’s second tier is full of big-name clubs with recent Premier League history, and it’s sure to be a toughly fought campaign as so many of them look to try and book their spot back in the promised land once again – Ihiekwe is hoping he and his Owls’ teammates can be one of them.

“The sky’s the limit,” he went on to tell YL. “Let’s take this momentum and go again. We’ve obviously seen what Sunderland did. They’re a big club like ourselves and have gone up and ended up in the play-offs.

“The Championship is going to be strong again next season but why not?”

Why Sheffield Wednesday’s ‘brilliant’ potential defensive target will end up a free agent

Potential Sheffield Wednesday target, Regan Poole, will be a free agent next month, but not because Lincoln City didn’t want to keep him.

The Star reported on Monday that the 24-year-old former Manchester United man had made his way onto the Owls’ radar as they eye new signings for their return to the Championship, with Poole ticking a lot of the boxes with regards to what Darren Moore will be looking for.

Poole joined the Imps in 2021, winning multiple club awards during his time there, but is now on the lookout for ‘options at a higher level’ as his current deal in Lincolnshire comes to an end.

Lincoln’s Director of Football, Jez George, said when they announced the club’s retained list that they would love to keep him – but didn’t want to stand in his way as he progresses up the pyramid.

“We have done everything possible to keep Regan at the club,” he explained. “But he wants to explore options at a higher level and we fully respect that.

“We have done everything possible to keep Regan at the club,” he explained. “But he wants to explore options at a higher level and we fully respect that.

“Regan has been brilliant for Lincoln City, captaining the team on many occasions, including on his final appearance at the LNER Stadium on Sunday, and is held in high esteem by everyone. We sincerely wish Regan all the best in the next chapter of his career, thank him for everything and hope that he gets the opportunity he deserves at a higher level of the football pyramid.”

Taking to Instagram last month, the defender bid farewell to the club by saying, “I would like to thank everyone associated with Lincoln City for the last two and a half years… I have loved every single minute of representing this incredible club, and I wish you all the very best for the future. It’s been an absolute pleasure.”

Wednesday are expected to have a busy summer as a number of players leave the club following the expiry of their contracts or loans at Hillsborough, and Moore will be hoping to get lots of his work done early so he can focus on the football as much as possible going into preseason next month.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *