Sheffield Wednesday’s 2020-21 season ended in disappointment as they were relegated from the Championship after nine seasons in the second tier.
But would they have survived if they had kept some key players fit for the whole season?
The Owls were dealt a massive blow back in December when Dominic Iorfa suffered a season-ending achilles injury, and that came after he had already spent time on the sidelines with a hamstring injury.
And he was joined in the treatment room by Australian international Massimo Luongo, with the midfielder playing just 12 Championship games last season due to a number of problems he picked up.
Both Luongo and Iorfa have masses of experience at Championship level and they may have been a big help in the relegation battle, however they must now prepare for a League One campaign when they are fully recovered from their injuries.
They’ve returned to training as pre-season begins and Moore is delighted that they’re on the road to recovery and has spoke out on how important the pair are to his plans.
Quiz: What was the score the last time Sheffield Wednesday played each of these 25 teams?
“They are two names and almost feel like two new signings for us,” Moore told Wednesday’s YouTube channel, per The Examiner.
“It has been great to have them back. We are managing them in terms of the first week to two weeks because of the length of time they have been off.
“They are in with the boys but parts of the training schedule they are detailed to step out of training. We don’t want to overload them too soon because they have been off for so long.
“It is about integrating them back into training on a steady basis over the next couple of weeks before letting them go.”
Wednesday are likely to be slightly hamstrung in the transfer market this summer due to the embargo they’re under, meaning that it is just free agents and loans for now that will be arriving at Hillsborough.
But they still have the nucleus of a very talented squad, especially at League One level, and if fit Iorfa and Luongo are going to be important to Moore next season.
Iorfa especially should probably be playing for a top Championship club and if he starts the season well then there may be interest, but from how we’ve seen Josh Windass’ transfer saga develop it looks as though the Owls aren’t in the business of selling any of their best under contract players, so a star-studded Wednesday line-up could be selected on the opening day of the season.