Date: 9th January 2006 at 5:37pm
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With the January transfer window now in full swing, we take a look at the latest rumours flying around Hillsborough in an attempt to get some mid-season optimism up and running!

In his interview wih Radio Sheffield after Saturday’s cup tie, Owls manager Paul Sturrock told fans that he was in discussions with a club over a player who he refused to mention, and was also confident of opening negotiations with two other clubs early this week.

We know that Mr Sturrock won’t be giving any hints over the players until the deal is done – after the collapse of deals such as Lee Trundle, Kris Boyd and Nathan Tyson to name but a few, but where there’s smoke there’s a fire!!

The local Spanish press reported that Racing Santander defender Lozano Oriol has been linked strongly with the Owls, after Sturrock sent scouts to watch the central defender’s progress. Oriol has played just seven games for the La Liga side this season after the arrival of several players to the club. The 24-year-old played 26 times the season before after joining from Lleida. The link is a strange one in that Sturrock has seemed content with the current central defence pairing over the past few games, and Drissa Diallo is also there for back-up.

Nottingham Forest midfielder David Friio was also linked with the club this week after failing to settle in at the City Ground. The 32-year-old French midfielder played for Sturrock during his time at Plymouth and may well be the man Sturrock thinks will solve the problem in the middle of midfield. It’s thought Friio would cost very little after moving to Forest for £100,000 last February.

Former Owls target Simon Whaley has signed for Preston North End from Bury for a fee believed to be around £250,000. Wednesday were close to signing the midfielder before the end of the early season transfer window but couldnt agree terms with the club.

As for players leaving the other way, Paul Heckingbottom has been linked strongly with League One teams Blackpool and Bristol City. Heckingbottom was told he could leave the club after sliding down the pecking order with the arrivals of Peter Gilbert and John Hills. Former club Bradford City have also bene linked with a loan move with view to a permanent signing.