Owls finally have a new number 9

Last updated : 09 August 2011 By C. Morris

Sheffield Wednesday have today moved to add to their limited attacking options by securing the services of Rochdale centre-forward Chris O’ Grady. The 25-year-old featured as a substitute for Dale against the Owls at Hillsborough on Saturday but has now made the move to S6 on a three-year contract.

O’Grady was pinpointed as one of Gary Megson’s specific targets during the summer and Rochdale had previously rebuffed a number of offers from Wednesday prior to the start of the season. The Lancashire club were keen to hold onto the player and had offered him what their chairman Chris Dunphy described as very lucrative stating, “we not only pushed the boat out in terms of the offer we made to him, we added an outboard motor!”

Despite this it became clear that the player was looking to further his career elsewhere and with just one year remaining on his contract Rochdale felt that the last offer from the Owls was too good to ignore.

Having started his career at Leicester in 2002, O’ Grady was unable to make the breakthrough to become a first-team regular with the Foxes despite spending 5 years at the club, taking in loan spells at Notts County and Rushden along the way. A move to Rotherham in 2007 was followed by a transfer to Oldham 18 months later but O’ Grady struggled to hold down a place with the Latics and after a string of loan spells he found his feet with Rochdale in August 2009. A successful loan spell became a permanent transfer in January 2010 and impressive total of 22 goals in 43 league games helped lead Rochdale to promotion to League One.

Last season O’ Grady scored a respectable 9 goals as a regular starter up-front as Rochdale acquitted themselves well in League one. At 6ft, 3’’ O’ Grady has a good stature and is a handful for opposition defenders.

With the Owls number 8 and 10 shirts still not taken Gary Megson will be hoping to add to his squad further and O’Grady could well be the first of a number of attacking players to join the club before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.