Wednesday will aim to finish the year on a high by stretching their unbeaten run to four matches in the Championship at out-of-form Huddersfield Town.
The sides go into the game in contrasting form, with the Owls having won their last three matches to climb out of the relegation zone and Town having not won in eight matches to slide down the table.
Wednesday won the last match in Huddersfield last season but the Terriers cruised to a 3-1 in S6 earlier this term. Much has changed since then and both teams will be going for victory to take into 2013.
Owls boss Dave Jones told the official SWFC website:
“We recently played a big derby at Barnsley so we know exactly what to expect from this game.
“There will be a bigger crowd that you get for a derby with a good atmosphere but we will be well supported too with our crowd from Sheffield.
“They have been magnificent this season and we will have another 4,000 there on Saturday.
“We will go there with confidence but we were never not confident in all the games we have played this season.’
Town boss Simon Grayston told the official HTAFC site:
“I think it`s a great game, isn`t it? You want another game to come along quickly after a poor performance and this is a local derby that will be played in front of a big crowd.
“Sheffield Wednesday are on a good run of form and we know this won`t be an easy game. We`ve watched DVDs of them and you can see a little bit of a difference in them compared with the early part of the season; sometimes that comes about through a little bit of luck or a single result brings a little bit more confidence – there are many aspects that will have helped them along the way. They will still feel like there is a lot of work to be done to try and get up the table, but everybody is working hard to get victories – no matter who you are in the division.
“We will have respect for the opposition, who are probably playing with a bit more confidence than they were four or five weeks ago, but it is about what we do as a team and as individuals to affect the game.”
Huddersfield Town Team News:
Anthony Gerrard will be available for selection for Town boss Simon Grayson after the former Cardiff defender won his appeal for a sending off at Crystal Palace earlier in the month.
Fellow defender Joel Lynch is also available for the Terriers after he served a one-match suspension and could return to the starting eleven.
Danny Ward and Calum Woods are injury concerns for Grayson and will be assessed at the last minute.
Player to watch: Jermaine Beckford
Wednesday have kept three cleans sheets on the spin and the Owls defence will have to be at the top of their game again to thwart the former Leeds United striker.
Wednesday Team News:
The Owls have no fresh injury concerns following the 1-0 Boxing Day win at Bolton Wanderers but boss Dave Jones could tinker with his side due to the numerous matches in such a short space of time over the festive period.
Strikers Chris O’Grady and Gary Madine will both be pushing for recalls after Mamady Sidibe led the line, and scored, in Lancashire, while Jay Bothroyd is also expected to be available for selection following a few weeks on the sidelines.
Jose Semedo also comes back into contention from a knee injury but Jones may stick with his midfield duo of David Prutton and Rhys McCabe, who have proved a success in recent weeks.
Player to watch: Michail Antonio
If Wednesday set up like they did at Bolton, they will need the pace of Michail Antonio to turn defence into attack. He linked well with Sidibe at the Reebok Stadium but could link-up with O’Grady or Madine against the Terriers.
Match Facts & Stats
Huddersfield wins: 23
Wednesday wins: 15
Last Time Out:
Wednesday 1-3 Town
Both teams finished with ten men but Town took all three points when the sides met earlier in the season. Joel Lynch saw red for the visitors while Joe Mattock was sent off for Wednesday. Oliver Norwood, Lee Novak and Adam Clayton netted for the visitors while Reda Johnson grabbed the Owls’ consolation.
v Burnley (H) – 1/1/13