Sheffield Wednesday: Owls contract talks stall with Loovens

Owls skipper Glenn Loovens
Owls skipper Glenn Loovens

Contract talks have stalled between Sheffield Wednesday and captain Glenn Loovens.

Sources close to the centre-back have disclosed the Dutchman remains no closer to signing a new deal, despite being offered fresh terms more than six weeks ago by the Championship club.

Although Loovens played a key role in an Owls backline which equalled a club-record of 17 league clean sheets last season, it is understood the 31-year-old has been offered reduced terms to stay at Hillsborough.

Negotiations remain on-going, but there are now serious doubts over whether Loovens will prolong his Wednesday stay. Loovens, who has represented the Owls 54 times, will become a free agent on July 1.

The former Cardiff City and Celtic defender initially joined Wednesday on a short-term deal just days after Dave Jones was relieved of his duties in December 2013. His leadership qualities and ability to organise a backline prompted former boss Stuart Gray to hand him a new one-year contract last summer.

Loovens formed an outstanding partnership at the heart of the Owls’ rearguard with Tom Lees. The duo dovetailed effectively together and produced rock solid performances, particularly in the first half of the 2014/15 season.

However, Loovens has not featured since Wednesday’s 2-0 defeat at Reading at the end of January. He suffered an ankle injury in a training ground collision with Atdhe Nuhiu which required surgery, leading to him missing the rest of the campaign.

If Loovens decides to move on, it would leave the Owls with a big defensive hole to fill. Having released Kamil Zayatte, Joe Mattock and Lewis Buxton last month, managerless Wednesday are short of defensive cover.

It is not just Loovens who the Owls have yet to tie down. They are still waiting for answers from Chris Maguire, Chris Kirkland and Jose Semedo, with Kieran Lee having recently penned a new contract.