Sheffield Wednesday owner Dejphon Chansiri has revealed that the Owls have not received an offer that has been acceptable for Jordan Rhodes in the last few transfer windows, while he also suggested the club kept hold to Fernando Forestieri to appease supporters.
Both Rhodes and Forestieri have been struggling to make much of an impact at Hillsborough this season, with the pair making just 12 and 17 Championship appearances respectively, and scoring a combined total of five league goals.
Those two players were both brought in on what were high wages for Sheffield Wednesday, and although Forestieri did deliver some strong performances in his first two seasons, they have both not really contributed enough in the last few campaigns – and with both players out of contract in the summer they could be set to leave for free.
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Speaking to Yorkshire Live, Chansiri revealed that Sheffield Wednesday have received offers in the past for Rhodes which have been unacceptable to them.
He said: “My people have told me rumours that we have rejected offers on other players because we are demanding huge transfer fees or loan fees but I can tell you this is not true at all. Norwich wanted to take Jordan Rhodes last summer but only on a free transfer.
“This made no sense to us and would actually cause us more problems with FFP as we would have to pay all the outstanding balance on his transfer from Middlesbrough. So it was better for Jordan to stay here and try to make his way into the team and score some goals.
“When he went to Norwich the previous year on loan, we wanted the deal to include a clause for them to buy in a similar way when we bought Jordan from Middlesbrough.
“This kind of deal is normal. But they did not want this option. Norwich did not even talk about buying Jordan, only a loan, but their sporting director in a later interview was saying many things that were not true, things that were negative to me and damaging to our club.
The Sheffield Wednesday owner also opened up on what happened with his situation in the January transfer window, insisting that no offers were made for the forward.
“This year in January, another club offered a very low package, it was a deal that made no sense for us. My people also told me Celtic had supposedly made an offer but we demanded a very big loan fee that stopped the deal. Again, this is not true, there was no official approach or offer at all.
“If the deal is right for all parties we can move but if not we cannot, it is that simple.
He also suggested that the club have kept hold of Forestieri to either appease the fans, or because the deals offered were not the right ones for the club.
“With Fernando we did receive an offer but if we had sold him then I believe most of our fans would not be happy, same as Keiren Westwood, they would say we are a selling club and selling our best players.
“We received a low offer for Fernando, then a player exchange and then the offer was higher. But with FFP becoming an issue, we could have been in a situation where we could not buy a replacement. Carlos did not want to sell Fernando and the transfer fee would have had to cover FFP, which it did not.”
This is very interesting insight into the situations with both Forestieri and Rhodes, with the two strikers having been on the fringes of the first team squad during the last few campaigns, with Rhodes even spending time out on loan with Norwich City last season.
The pair have underperformed really for the Owls in the last few seasons, and the fact that they are still at the club suggests that there have been issues with the club’s recruitment strategy, but Chansiri has insisted that they remain at Hillsborough because a move never really materialised that suited the club.
It looks like the Owls could lose both players come the summer, which would be somewhat of a blow for the club financially, but it might be one that they just need to suffer and then seek to learn from in the future, with a re-structure of their transfer approach looking overdue.
Sheffield Wednesday supporters can at least have a little more insight into why the club have not sold either player to help them balance the books, but that probably will not be enough to prevent further scrutiny into how they ended up in this position in the first place.