Date: 2nd April 2008 at 6:03pm
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Wednesday included five loan players in their squad of 16 that featured against Coventry City on Tuesday night – and they’ll all be key in the Owls’ bid against relegation.

Let me get one thing out of the way, I’m not a big fan of loan signings and I’m sure everyone would love a squad of 16 fit players that are all contracted to Wednesday for the foreseeable future, rather than having to beg and borrow from other clubs not only from teams in higher divisions, but teams in and around us.

It gives me a feeling of inconsistency, a feeling that we don’t really know who we’re going to be watching from one week to the next, and what the future holds for the team that I support.

In the days as a Premiership supporter of the Owls, loan signings were almost as rare as Enoch Showunmi goals and we usually had to wait until the summer to see our new, big-name signings.

But those days are no more, we’re in a dog-fight, hey, we have been for about a decade haven’t we?

And now we’re suddenly looking at five players who we’ve brought in to the club on loan who could very much shape the way our season pans out – survival or relegation.

Loans have never been more important for the club, at one point earlier in the season it looked as though we were struggling to even bring one loan player to the club, with the wages for Graham Kavanagh dependant on us letting players go out on loan elsewhere.

But we’ve seen a sudden influx, with Ben Sahar, Franck Songo’o, Adam Bolder and more recently West Brom hitman Bartosz Slusarksi coming in to help our plight.

They’re key, there’s no two ways about it.

Portsmouth winger Franck Songo’o has enjoyed the sun, sea and sand during his spell with Spanish giants Barcelona, and you can tell he learned a few tricks of the trade during his time there with some of the superb trickery that was on show during the clash with Coventry, and in his debut against QPR.

He was the biggest threat not only for the Owls, but on the pitch against the Sky Blues and has been the biggest threat for Wednesday since his arrival. I dread to think about the creativity from our midfield should Franck not grace it.

Ben Sahar will also have a vital impact on the run-in after agreeing an extension to his loan spell from Chelsea.

Question marks were raising over the signing of the youngster, even though he came highly-rated as an Israel international and a handful of appearances that he’s made for the Stamford Bridge club, after he made just two substitute appearances for the Owls in his initial one-month deal.

But Sahar has dig deep to put in an impressive performance which saw him bag his first goal for the Owls in the 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace last weekend, while also showing some neat touches in the clash with Coventry in midweek.

He isn’t the ideal foil for Burton, and he needs time to adjust to the ‘rough and tumble’ of a relegation scrap, but his goals could well be key for Wednesday, especially in the current injury crisis at the club.

The duo are no doubt the most important loan players at the club in terms of impact so far, but the Owls’ have three other players on their books which are sure to have their say on proceedings.

Graham Kavanagh enjoyed a superb initial spell to show the Owls fans what he’s all about, but has struggled in recent weeks with some wayward passing.

Still, his experience at this level will count going in to the final matches of the season and his class from his career will no doubt bring about a couple of vital inputs in to proceedings with the younger heads around him.

Adam Bolder was another player who failed to make the desired impact on the Wednesday faithful, especially after his booking at Barnsley saw him sit out two games through suspension.

But had Laws decided to send the midfielder back to QPR at this stage of the season, the Owls could well have been left short in the middle of the park, especially considering the injury picked up by Sean McAllister in midweek and the dip in form of Kavanagh.

Bartosz Slusarki is the fifth loanee at the club, with his skill and ability still up in the air after being gelled in to the team with just a substitute appearance to show on his CV thus far.

But the Polish striker has been in top form for the West Brom reserves, and will add more competition for places in the Wednesday attack, which is always good, especially at this stage of the season.

We all know some haven’t worked out, Enoch Showunmi being a prime example, but at least Laws has been active in the loan market, probably a lot more than most of us expected, and some of his signings will no doubt be key for the remainder of the season.


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