Barry Bannan issues an apology to Sheffield Wednesday supporters

SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY captain Barry Bannan has apologised to Owls supporters following the club's relegation to the third tier - and admits that a summer overhaul is needed to help transform fortunes at Hillsborough.

Barry Bannan.

Wednesday's Championship fate was sealed in Saturday's 3-3 draw at Derby County, the final act of a fraught season on and off the pitch.

The Owls have now returned to League One - a level they last played at in 2011-12 - and it promises to be a key close-season in the modern-day history of the club.

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Wholesale changes are expected, with manager Darren Moore confirming that plans are already place. Meetings with individual players will take place this week.

Sam Hutchinson, Keiren Westwood, Tom Lees, Adam Reach, Kadeem Harris, Jordan Rhodes, Joey Pelupessy, Moses Odubajo, Joost van Aken and Elias Kachunga are among the senior players out of contract.

One thing that Bannan is crystal-clear about is his desire for Moore to remain at the club, after being hugely impressed him in the short time he has been with the Owls thus far - with the former West Brom and Doncaster Rovers chief not seen as culpable in any way whatsoever for the club's demotion.

Bannan said: "There’s six or seven weeks to stew over it and grow from it now.

"I think we have to look at last season and learn from it, it shouldn’t ever happen again. We had enough chances to get ourselves out of it and now we need to grow and become stronger from it, as men and as players.

"No doubt there will be a lot of changes this summer, that’s for the manager and the chairman to go through. It’ll be a big change to the last couple of seasons, but I think a reshuffle is what is needed at this time.

"I think it’s a massive boost for the club to have Darren Moore as manager. If there are any positives to take from this season, he would probably be the biggest one.

"His staff have been unbelievable too, they’ve been one of the best sets of managers and coaches I’ve worked with. Their ideas and how they want to go about things are second to none and it’s a big positive for the club moving forward."

Going on the record to say sorry to supporters for the club's painful descent into League One, the Scot continued: "As captain, I want to apologise to the fans on behalf of all the players. We gave our all but we weren’t good enough and just fell short.

"But we want to thank you for your support, you’ve been brilliant with us even without being in the stadium, we could still feel that support from afar.

"It’s important you stick with the club and hopefully we can get the club back to where we want to be. Hopefully, with the manager we have in place, we can get back to winning ways and next season can be an enjoyable one for the fans."