Barry Bannan recently revealed his ambition to return to the Premier League before retiring and insisted he could have been playing top-flight football if he was at a club better suited for his skill set.
He said in an interview with Daily Record: “I’m proud of what I’ve achieved in my career but still think it could have been better. I’ve still not given up hope of playing in the Premier League again.
“Looking back, I could have done more. The clubs I’ve moved to were massive but they’ve been fighting to stay in the Premier League. Good football, which I’m more attracted to, often goes out the window – it’s about survival.
“I’ve got no regrets but if I’d have found a club that maybe suited my style more, I’d have achieved more. It sounds selfish but maybe if a team was built around the way I play, it would have brought the best out in me.
“I had it in my first year at Sheffield Wednesday with our Portuguese manager, Carlos Carvalhal, who really took to me. That’s when I shone but it’s just about getting breaks in your career, and it’s also about timing.
“Look at Brentford now in the Championship. It would be perfect for me to play in a team like that.” Unsurprisingly, Bannan’s comments haven’t gone down well with supporters in Owls Talk.
OrlandoUnTrustful: “Let him go if he’s not happy. One of the most overrated players in the league.”
Wily Fox: “In essence, he’s right. We haven’t really played football since 2016. I don’t mind him speaking up. At 30 (and) with a year left on his contract, it’s time to sell anyway.
Agent Walker: “The reality is he’s a slightly above average player (in) a team that’s just not that creative. If he was this outstanding player… we would have been batting away offers left right and centre.”
Baldeshater: “Not strong enough to play in central midfield in a 4_4_2”
Great Big Galaa: “I think we need a fresh start in general and moving on the likes of Bannan and Reach will probably be part of this process?”
Jack Whitham: “Talks a great game Bannan but when it comes to the big matches he doesn’t turn up.”
The 30-year-old joined Sheffield Wednesday from Crystal Palace in 2015 and has gone on to make 200 appearances in all competitions, scoring 11 goals and making 32 assists. Bannan’s contract is up in 2021, however, so his long association with the Owls could end next year.
The timing of his comments are intriguing. Wednesday have struggled in 2020, falling to 15th in the Championship and winning just two league games since December 2019, so is Bannan issuing a come-and-get-me plea to potential suitors?
The Scotland international is a talented deep-lying playmaker with a great range of passing, so he may fare better at a side that place more emphasis on attractive football and retaining possession. However, he’s also been at the heart of years of failure (15th in 2017/18, 12th in 2018/19, 15th in 2019/20), so some humility wouldn’t hurt.