Jeffers to complete £700,000 Owls transfer

August 9, 2007

Francis Jeffers can rediscover the goalscoring touch which earned him an £8million move to Arsenal and a 'fox in the box' tag from Arsene Wenger.

That is the view of Sheffield Wednesday boss Brian Laws, who is set to complete a deal for the Blackburn striker believed to be worth around £700,000.

Jeffers' career has faltered badly since he joined Arsenal from Everton in a big-money transfer six years ago, but Laws said: 'Francis has played for and scored for England, and we all remember the comments from Arsene Wenger about him being a 'fox in the box'.

'His goalscoring ability is still there; it just needs to be harnessed in the right way.

'Part of that involves playing regularly and maybe the time has come for Francis to realise he has to move to a Championship club to do that.'

Jeffers spent a successful loan spell at Ipswich last season - scoring four goals in nine appearances - but turned down a permanent move to Portman Road earlier in the summer.

The lure of Wednesday - recognised as one of the biggest clubs outside of the Premier League - could prove impossible to resist.

Jeffers has now emerged as the Owls' number one target, and Laws is hoping to close the deal in time to hand him a debut in Saturday's opener away to Ipswich.

'We're hopeful of signing Francis in time for Saturday,' added the Wednesday boss. 'At times in the past Francis seems to have sacrificed his career for the sake of staying in the Premier League.

'He got the big-money move from Everton to Arsenal and has never quite managed to kick on from there.

'He's probably never played more than 10 to 15 Premier League games in a season but if he joined us he would get that regular first-team football that any player needs.

'Now is the time for him to take some positive action for the benefit of his own career.

'He's perhaps stayed at certain clubs too long, rather than move on to somewhere new even if that meant dropping down a division.'