Wednesday take a break from their League One troubles and turn their attentions to the FA Cup on Saturday with a trip to face Birmingham City in the fifth round.
Owls boss Gary Megson will be hoping the prestigious competition brings the best out of his under-performing troops and helps to get season back on track with an impressive performance against the Barclays Premier League side.
Unlike league matches, the Owls will be the firm underdogs for the clash against the Blues and can have the weight of expectancy lifted from their shoulders.
It will still be a huge task to continue their run in the competition, but fans have learnt to expect the unexpected in this year’s FA Cup so far.
Owls boss Gary Megson told the official SWFC website:
‘There will be absolutely no pressure on us to win this game, and that is almost a unique situation for Sheffield Wednesday this season.
‘I have been asked if that will help relax the players but I don’t want the players to relax, I want them to go out there on the front foot and get a result.
‘We will be taking 4,200 supporters to St Andrew’s and we could have taken more. We have to make those supporters proud.’
Birmingham City Team News:
Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is set to ring the changes to his side for the visit of Wednesday.
Some changes will be forced, and others not, as McLeish aims to weigh up his options following a league defeat against Newcastle United in midweek and a trip to Wembley in the League Cup final next weekend.
Defensive duo Liam Ridgewell and Martin Jiranek both picked up knocks in the clash with the Magpies and the Blues boss has confirmed both will be missing for the clash with Wednesday.
It means Curtis Davies is expected to make his debut following his move to St Andrews from second city rivals Aston Villa in the January transfer window.
McLeish is also expected to ring the changes elsewhere as the Blues risk burn-out before their Carling Cup final clash with Arsenal next weekend.
Player to watch: Kevin Phillips
Phillips has started more games on the bench than in the stating eleven this season, but he could be given a starting role on Saturday, and has a superb record of netting goals, usually late, against the Owls in his career.
Wednesday Team News:
Wednesday will be without striker Gary Madine for the trip to the Midlands due to the former Carlisle United striker being cup-tied.
It means boss Gary Megson is likely to put Neil Mellor back in the starting eleven alongside captain, and former Blue, Clinton Morrison, although Paul Heffernan may also be considered.
Midfielder Giles Coke will also be missing through suspension after being sent off in the Owls’ 3-0 defeat at Tranmere Rovers in midweek.
Darren Potter could come back into the starting eleven to replace him after he missed the trip to Birkenhead through illness, but Tommy Miller is unlikely to get the nod despite returning to training this week. He could feature on the bench though.
Player to watch: Clinton Morrison
The Owls captain will relish playing against his former club, and will also relish playing in the FA Cup, without the pressures of expectancy on his, and his side’s shoulders in League One.
Match Facts & Stats
Birmingham wins: 32
Wednesday wins: 28
Last Time Out:
Wednesday 1-1 Birmingham
Wednesday were heading for victory the last time the two sides met over two years ago, thanks to Lewis Buxton’s second-half strike. But up popped that man Kevin Phillips, who netted an injury time leveller for the visitors.
v Bournemouth (A) – 22/02/11
v Carlisle (A) – 26/02/11