Darren Moore has dropped an update on his plans for Sheffield Wednesday ahead of their League One campaign next season.
In a recent interview with the Sheffield Star, the 47-year-old suggested that he will be looking to utilise the Owls’ academy ahead of their upcoming jaunt in the third tier of English football.
The report claims that, at present, Wednesday barely scrape double figures in terms of their playing staff following the release of a number of first-team regulars, including the likes of Kadeem Harris, Elias Kachunga, Tom Lees, Moses Odubajo, Joey Pelupessy, Adam Reach, Jordan Rhodes and Keiren Westwood.
However, rather than replacing the outgoing players in the transfer market, Moore seems intent on fielding a number of youth prospects to fill the gaps in his squad.
He said: “Any young player, certainly at the professional development phase in the U18s and U23s, should come back with a whetted appetite in feeling that if ever they have got a chance of stepping into the first-team here at Sheffield Wednesday it is now… I believe in youth and I believe there is a lot of good young players.
“Pre-season will be key for them. It will be hard but there will be opportunities for them to show what they are about. If they do show it, the platform will be there for them to perform.”
While Moore’s hand could well have been forced in this matter, as Sheffield Wednesday’s ongoing financial troubles under the leadership of Dejphon Chansiri are likely to result in an extremely limited transfer budget this summer, the news that the 47-year-old is prepared to give youth a chance next season will undoubtedly have fans of the club buzzing.
With a recent history of grossly overpaying on transfers fees and awarding contracts on extremely inflated wages, the news that Moore will not be looking to follow this approach is fantastic news for the club, both financially and on the pitch.
By placing his trust in the club’s academy prospects, the Sheffield Wednesday manager will be gaining a number of players who will be desperate to impress, either in order to secure a move elsewhere or simply to kickstart their footballing career, as well as ones who will work tirelessly to maintain their place in the Owls’ starting XI.
And, by exposing the youngsters to first-team football on a regular basis, their chances of developing as footballers will dramatically improve – something that has the potential to leave the club with a number of valuable assets on their hands come the end of the season.
Furthermore, in using academy products instead of spending money on transfer fees and big wages for more experienced players, Wednesday will also find themselves climbing out of their financial troubles at a much faster rate.
As such, Moore’s comments regarding his plans for next season could easily be viewed in the first step in the right direction for Wednesday, something that has been a long time coming.