WEDNESDAY won’t have happy memories of Exeter’s St James Park stadium after last season’s 5-1 drubbing, but things are much different this season with the Owls pushing for promotion and City looking to avoid the drop.
The Grecians have won just once in their last ten matches and haven’t scored in their last four – something that’s left them just two points above the bottom four having played a game more than most of their rivals.
Victory will be crucial, therefore, for the hosts. But Wednesday need points for very different reasons – to cement their spot in the top-two, and boss Gary Megson will be looking for nothing less than victory.
Exeter City Team News:
The Grecians are desperate for points after picking up just one win in their last ten matches. Their form has seen them drop down the table towards the relegation zone and results will need to improve if they’re to stay up.
Liam Sercombe is expected to be back and available for Paul Tisdale’s men after suffering an ankle injury and Exeter have no other injury concerns going into the match.
Player to watch: Daniel Nardiello
Nardiello is Exeter’s top-scorer so far this season with eight goals to his name and the Grecians will be looking to his goalscoring as one way of getting out of trouble this term. His former Barnsley links will make him want to do that bit better against the Owls.
Wednesday Team News:
Wednesday boss Gary Megson is expected to ring the changes from the side that bowed out of the FA Cup against Blackpool in midweek.
The Owls boss rested a number of key players for that contest, including strikers Gary Madine and Chris O’Grady and midfielder Jose Semedo, and all are set for a return at Exeter.
Skipper Rob Jones started and came through unscathed, although defender Miguel Llera, who’s impressed Megson in recent games, will be available after being cup-tied in midweek.
Other players ineligible to feature in the FA Cup were winger Mike Jones and loanee John Bostock. Both are set to return to the squad, with Bostock expected to get a starting role.
Defender Reda Johnson will be missing through suspension – he’ll miss two games after collecting his tenth booking of the campaign in midweek – and Julian Bennett is set to step-in at left-back.
Player to watch: Julian Bennett
The former Nottingham Forest man has yet to win a permanent place in the Owls’ back-line and, with Reda Johnson suspended, he has the chance to impress at left-back, starting down at Exeter this weekend.
Match Facts & Stats
Exeter wins: 6
Wednesday wins: 3
Last Time Out:
Wednesday 3-0 Exeter
Wednesday cruised to success last time the sides met at Hillsborough earlier this season. James O’Connor opened the scoring before Gary Madine netted a brace, one from the penalty spot.
v Stevenage (H) – 14/02/12
v Chesterfield (A) – 18/02/12