Sheffield Wednesday: We must keep Keiren Westwood warns Tom Lees

Owls man of the match keeper Keiren Westwood
Owls man of the match keeper Keiren Westwood

The Owls’ number one priority this summer should be tying down keeper Keiren Westwood according to Tom Lees.

Wednesday’s 1-0 win over Brentford on Tuesday night saw them equal the club record for most clean sheets in a single season.

Defender Lees paid tribute to Westwood’s role in matching the record.

And with speculation linking the Irish keeper with a move away from Hillsborough, Lees says it is vital Westwood is not allowed to leave if the Owls are serious about pushing for promotion next season.

“Keiren has been fantastic this season,” he said. “He has kept us in a lot of games and has contributed massively to that record of clean sheets.

“He’s had a great season. Hopefully we can keep him for next season. It’s important we keep our best players and he fits into that category.

“The summer for us is about improving and moving forward. It’s crucial we do not lose people and replace them with not as good players.

“We need to keep our best players and add to what we have got. If we can do that, hopefully we can take a step forward.”

Lees admits there was a sense of relief as much as pride in securing a 17th Championship clean sheet and he says the Owls should be looking to set a new record before the season is out.

After taking 27 games to earn their first 13 clean sheets, it took another 16 matches to secure the last four. And Lees says that has been down to the disruption in the back four due to injuries for the likes of Glenn Loovens and Liam Palmer.

He said: “At the start of the season, you could probably tell me what the back four was going to be. Nine times out of ten it was the same.

“We have had injuries since Christmas and it has not just been one or two. It has been three out of the back four who have changed.

“We have had a settled back four in the last couple of games and the boys who have come in and have done really well.”