New Barry Bannan Sheffield Wednesday contract should be signed in 'a couple of weeks' says captain
In October the Scotland international revealed he was in talks over extending his deal, which is due to expire in the summer, and said the threat of relegation from the Championship would not put him off or cause him to delay. There has been even more turmoil since, with Garry Monk then Tony Pulis sacked as manager, and Neil Thompson in caretaker control since the new year.
Even so, Bannan is determined to commit his future.
As their captain and arguably best player, the news is a huge boost to a club which has also suffered badly with a Covid-19 outbreak in 2021.
“I've made it clear what I want to do, I want to stay at the club,” he reiterated.
“We're nearly there so hopefully there will be some good news in the coming week or two.
“I've made it clear where I want to be. It's difficult with the chairman not being in the country at the minute, so it's hard to get things done but we're nearly there and hopefully in a few weeks' time it will be all done and I can concentrate on getting results for the club.”
With the transfer window open until February 1 and a need for new faces Bannan acknowledges – so far only midfielder Andre Green has been recruited – the club could be forgiven for concentrating on that and the search for a new manager until then. Who the identity of that is will have no bearing on Bannan's willingness to sign up, he insists.
“Nah, not at all,” he said. “I'm not really bothered to be honest.
“If Tommo stays or a new manager comes in, I'll back myself to play ever week if I'm fit so that shouldn't change things.
“If a new manager comes in hopefully I can play a big part at this club. It's not really been a massive part in this decision.”
Midfielder Bannan made it clear, however, the squad would be happy for former York City and Scarborough manager Thompson to remain in charge until the end of the season.
“Tommo's done really well,” he said. “We know Tommo well, he's been here for years (working in the academy and with the under-23s).
“The big thing he's done since he's come in is try to lift the spirits and tried to let us express ourselves. He wants us to have a go and if we lose, so be it.
“We've got a massive respect as a team for Neil Thompson. We know him really well, we know each other inside out.
“He's done really well in the games he's been in charge of so far. If it happens, it happens. I think the boys would be more than happy if Tommo was here to the end of the season.
“That's out of our hands, it's above us. It's the chairman's decision and we'll back him whatever way he goes.
“We just wait and try to get results on the pitch. Whatever's happening in the background is nothing to do with us, really.
“Tommo's done really well and if this is his chance to shine and get the job, we'll be 100 per cent behind him.
“If someone else comes in it will be the same, we'll work as hard as possible for the new manager.”
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