Sheffield Wednesday striker Steven Fletcher could have been planning for life in the Premier League with Norwich City, had it not been for the length of a car journey from Glasgow to Norfolk and the intervention of his Scotland international team-mate Barry Bannan.
Back in 2016 having come to the end of his contract with Sunderland, Fletcher was making a six hour journey to hold talks with then Canaries boss Alex Neil, before he got a call from his agent saying that Sheffield Wednesday were also interested.
Fletcher explained via Open Goal “It was Baz (Bannan) who got me to sign. I was going down to talk with Norwich. Alex Neil was the manager” adding: “I was driving down and my agent had called me on the way down saying, listen, Sheffield Wednesday are keen. I was looking at the sat-nav thinking, there’s still six hours left from Glasgow to Norwich – still a long way to go. I was half-way, I was thinking, Sheffield’s just there, do you know what I mean? I texted him (Bannan) and said, what’s Wednesday like? He said, brilliant. I said, they want me to go speak to them. He said, you need to come. And I was like, right – sat-nav, changing it. I went in and signed that night.”
So will Fletcher regret choosing the Owls over the Canaries now?
“I don’t think he does, no.
“He wouldn’t have got a game at Norwich and although footballers want to win things, they want to play as well.
“He kept his career alive at Hillsborough and that wouldn’t have happened at Carrow Road.
“There will be no regrets.”
“Fletcher has been an important player for Sheffield Wednesday over the past few seasons and is a fan favourite at Hillsborough, so I’m sure he will not regret signing for them.
“Given the success that Norwich have achieved this season, maybe he will wonder what if, but everything happens for a reason.
“Sheffield Wednesday have shown plenty of promise since Steve Bruce took charge at Hillsborough in February and Fletcher will still fancy his chances of returning to the Premier League with the Owls next season.”
“He’ll sure be regretting it massively.
“Just look at how well Norwich have done this season, he’ll be wondering what could have been.
“He could well have been key to their promotion bid, and will certainly be furious at his decision to turn down the Canaries earlier in his career.”