Sheffield Wednesday: Tom Lees hopes his injury troubles are behind him

Tom Lees
Tom Lees

Tom Lees has been forced to endure two frustrating watching briefs over the last two seasons.

A hamstring injury sidelined the influential Owls defender for a large proportion of the 2015/16 campaign.

And Lees has been unable to stay out of the treatment room this time around, sitting out nine matches over a six-week period earlier this year due to a knee problem.

The defender admits he is not the best watcher of his own sport.

“I hate watching from the sidelines,” Lees told The Star. “I find it really difficult.

“Obviously, I continued to support the boys but it was a little bit like self torture really because I would rather not see what I’m missing.

“But injuries are part and parcel of football. I still watched and supported the lads when I was out and wanted them to do the best that they could.”

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It is the first time vice-captain Lees has spoken of his injury woe.

Wednesday won five and lost three without the 26-year-old, with Vincent Sasso filling in with mixed results at centre-half.

Lees returned to action before the last international break but was powerless to prevent the Owls from sliding to a 2-0 Hillsborough defeat against promotion rivals Reading.

The former Leeds United player said: “It was only a minor injury but it was made more frustrating by the fact that it just wouldn’t go away as quickly as I wanted it to.

“It was a difficult time for me and a period in the season I didn’t enjoy but you can’t feel sorry for yourself in those situations.

“Everybody at the club kept me going. The boys did really well and I’m pleased for them.”

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Lees is keen to make up for lost time following his injury lay-off.

“I’m just happy to be back playing again,” he admitted.

“When you have injuries, it makes you appreciate playing more.

“I feel like I’m doing okay at the moment. All I want is to contribute what I can to the team.”

The Owls dropped to fifth in the Championship standings following Huddersfield Town’s midweek victory at Wolverhampton Wanderers. Victory cemented the Terriers play-off spot with two matches left.

Wednesday still require two draws or a victory from their remaining fixtures to guarantee a second successive top-six finish. Carlos Carvalhal’s side go to Ipswich Town on Saturday.

“It would be nice to get the job done there (at Ipswich) and then we can start to focus on the play-offs and then the manager can do what he wants to do in the last game of the season,” he said.

“But we are not getting ahead of ourselves and we have got to secure it mathematically.”

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