Bywater aims to join list of Owls loan hits

Nicky Weaver is among goalkeepers who have starred while on loan at Hillsborough

Nicky Weaver is among goalkeepers who have starred while on loan at Hillsborough

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STEPHEN Bywater has some tough acts to follow as the latest of many goalkeepers who have been signed by the Owls on loan in the last 10 years.

Nicky Weaver, whose injury has led indirectly to Bywater’s arrival, himself made his first Wednesday mark as a borrowed player.

Scott Carson is among goalkeepers who have starred while on loan at Hillsborough

Scott Carson is among goalkeepers who have starred while on loan at Hillsborough

There was a time when the club always seemed to be having to rely on loans to prop up their goalkeeping department.

That changed when Brian Laws signed Lee Grant from Derby on a full deal.

Now Bywater has a three-month stay and a chance to join the roll of honour.

David Lucas arrived as a loan man in 2003 but he was to play 80 games over three years, and will always be remembered as a member of the 2005 promotion side, who came back from injury to play in the play-offs.

Lucas’s return was timely, for the keeper’s jersey in the last eight games of the League campaign was filled capably by on-loan Paul Gallacher, whose sending-off made him unavailable for the start of the play-offs.

Weaver was a loan success, from Manchester City, as he fulfilled an ambition by playing for the club he has always supported, making 14 appearances in a two-month spell from November, 2005, when Wednesday were trying to stabilise themselves in the Championship.

His successor was Scott Carson, from Liverpool, who in the last nine games of the season did as much as anyone to keep the club up.

With Paul Sturrock unable to bring back Carson for the start of the 2006-07 campaign, he turned to Middlesbrough and Brad Jones, who helped out for three months.

After Sturrock was fired that November, Mark Crossley became Brian Laws’s first signing, and during his 19 games became the first goalkeeper in the club’s history to score in open play - a headed late equaliser from a corner in a draw with Southampton

But the Owls were chasing promotion the following year when Iain Turner starred, and played in 11 games near the end of the season before going back to Everton.

Wigan’s Lee Nicholls was brought in near the end of last season as insurance after Weaver was injured and the youngster was an unused sub for six games.