Sheffield Wednesday: Mandaric faces big Wednesday decision

Wednesday chairman Milan Mandaric
Wednesday chairman Milan Mandaric

Milan Mandaric cares deeply about Sheffield Wednesday.

Since buying the club in December 2010, he has invested his time, effort and nearly £30m into the Owls.

So much good has been achieved under Mandaric’s premiership. He has overseen a mid-table finish in League One, a glorious promotion where they pipped Sheffield United to the second automatic spot and helped stabilise Wednesday in the Championship, with the club finishing 18th in the 2012/13 campaign and 16th last term. It’s hard to argue with the progress they have made.

But now Mandaric must make a major decision regarding his future. It is understood Azerbaijani businessman Hafiz Mammadov has expressed an interest in buying Wednesday. Will Mandaric sell up or does he still feel he has something to offer?

Mandaric has repeatedly told The Star he will only sanction a takeover if the newcomers are suitable and it is in the best interests of the club.

When the club revealed their annual accounts at the end of February, the Owls chairman said: “I will continue to explore any avenue of investment. I will always welcome the advances of someone who has the finances to potentially accelerate the long-term plans I have to restore this club back among the elite of English football.”

He added: “I will not, however, gamble with the long-term future of Sheffield Wednesday. This club has flirted with financial oblivion far too closely in recent seasons and anyone wishing to join me or replace me will need to pass my fit and proper persons test’, which I believe will be at a far higher standard than some other club owners have applied in the past.”

As much as Mandaric wants to make a return on his investment, he wants to leave Wednesday in safe hands. It will be he who makes the final call on whether Mammadov and the Owls are a good match.