Having navigated Sheffield Wednesday to a 12th place finish in the Championship earlier this month, Steve Bruce will be hoping that he can launch a bid for promotion during the 2019/20 campaign in what will be his first full season in charge at Hillsborough.
Yet in order to build the foundations needed for success, the 58-year-old must get his recruitment spot on this summer as if he doesn’t, it could lead to yet another year of mediocrity for the Owls.
Keeping this in mind, it is imperative that Bruce resists the temptation to sign Stewart Downing when the transfer window opens in July.
According to Sky Sports journalist Keith Downie, the Owls are reportedly weighing up the possiblity of bringing in the Middlesbrough winger who will be leaving the Riverside Stadium when his current deal expires next month.
Although securing the services of Downing would be a cost-efficient move for Wednesday, it could be argued that by doing so, they will be taking a step backwards.
Despite having a wealth of experience both at Championship and Premier League level, the £1.8m-rated ace (via Transfermarkt) struggled to make any sort of impact for Boro last season as he scored just two goals in 40 appearances in all competitions.
With his talents clearly waning, Downing would not be that much of an upgrade on the likes of George Boyd and Marco Matias who were both released by Bruce after failing to impress in the final few months of the campaign.
Furthermore, with the former England international very much in the twilight of his career at the age of 34, it is not guaranteed that he will be able to stay fit for a prolonged period of time.
Therefore, it may be more beneficial for the Owls to switch their focus to signing an exciting, young attacking midfielder instead of wasting their time trying to convince Downing to join the club.
What do you think Wednesday fans? Would signing Downing this summer be a mistake? Or could he offer the experience needed to help your club push on for promotion next season? Get in touch below.Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!