Did Sheffield Wednesday's McGeady, McManaman treatment cost them in Kent pursuit?

Connor Goldson of Brighton and Hove Albion and Callum McManaman of Sheffield Wednesday clash during the Sky Bet Championship match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Sheffield Wednesday at...

Sheffield Wednesday are said to have wanted the Liverpool winger on loan.

Ryan Kent of Liverpool during a pre-season friendly match between Tranmere Rovers and Liverpool at Prenton Park on July 12, 2017 in Birkenhead, England.Ryan Kent in action for Liverpool

It is claimed that Sheffield Wednesday held discussions with Liverpool last week, regarding a loan deal for winger Ryan Kent (Sheffield Star).

Kent, who impressed on loan to Barnsley last season, later joined Freiburg instead, while nothing came either of the Owls' alleged interest in Southampton's Josh Sims and Watford's Isaac Success.

In Kent's case specifically, it is perhaps no surprise that Wednesday's pursuit failed to bear fruit. Even without top flight interest, it's hard to imagine the Owls would have featured too highly on any Premier League club's list of ideal destinations when seeking to temporarily re-home its most promising talents.

Connor Goldson of Brighton and Hove Albion and Callum McManaman of Sheffield Wednesday clash during the Sky Bet Championship match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Sheffield Wednesday at...Callum McManaman (right) in action for Sheffield Wednesday

Not even a couple of wingers with experience at the highest level in Aiden McGeady and Callum McManaman could cut it at Hillsborough, both featuring inconsistently throughout their six-month loan spells, with McGeady later enjoying success at Preston North End and now Sunderland, where he has since been joined by McManaman.

So why would any top club with assets to develop risk that happening again?

That's not necessarily a criticism of Carlos Carvalhal, the Wednesday head coach who oversaw both players' tenures. He tried to explain the pair's struggles in an interview with BBC Radio Sheffield last month: "The problem with McGeady and McManaman was the same - they didn’t play before too much. They came here with their competition levels not very high.

Carlos Carvalhal, Manager of Sheffield Wednesday looks on prior to the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Semi Final 1st leg match between Huddersfield Town and Sheffield Wednesday at Galpharm...Sheffield Wednesday head coach Carlos Carvalhal

"They need time to play, they need to play often, they need to play 90 minutes. But at the same time we need to win games and the players were not fit, not ready to play 90 minutes."

Having seen a bit of Kent at Barnsley last season, it strikes me - for what it's worth - he would have been a better fit for Wednesday than either McGeady or McManaman - equally skilful and creative, but well-drilled defensively too, as Ben Marshall was when borrowed from Stoke City all those years ago.

Things might well have been different this time around, but you can appreciate Liverpool's reluctance. And in sending Kent to Germany's Bundesliga, they've arguably made the best possible call.

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