This is it – the Owls’ 2007-08 campaign boils down to the final day of the season, with Brian Laws and his men maintaining their Championship status should they better the result of Leicester City or Southampton.
But Laws won’t be wanting to rely on results elsewhere to secure the Owls’ fate, he’ll be wanting to go all out for three points against an improved Canaries side in front of the Championship’s biggest crowd of the season inside S6.
The Owls reduced tickets for the vital clash to pack the ground, and it worked, with fans being left disappointed at not being able to get a ticket, and Laws will be hoping they act as a 12th man to sing Wednesday to their most important win of the season.
Brian Laws told SWFC.co.uk:
‘Glenn Roeder has already mentioned that it’s the club’s responsibility to put on a performance and to give it their best shot at winning the game. Their training camp has been relaxed and that’s because they achieved what they set out to achieve in maintaining Championship status.’
‘I’ve got fresh memories myself of playing for Nottingham Forest against Sheffield Wednesday, it was the last game of the season and we had nothing to play for. But I don’t think Sheffield Wednesday approached the game in the right manner because they got relegated.
‘We have a job to do now, the same as Norwich, who have a responsibility like every other club in this division, to perform to the best of their ability. It would be unfair and unjust on the teams around us if they came here and switched off, so I know they’ll come here with the right attitude and give us a game and look to win.’
Glenn Roeder told Canaries.co.uk:
‘They say it is going to be the biggest crowd in the Championship this year, close to 40,000. It was a long time ago but I was fortunate enough to play in a few sell-outs at Hillsborough and it’s a great atmosphere.
‘Hillsborough is one of the most famous names in British football, they always used to play cup semi-finals there. It’s a game to look forward to and I’m determined to make sure the players are in the right frame of mind to go there and win.’
Wednesday Team News:
The only doubt for Owls’ boss Laws going in to the game is the fitness of Lee Bullen, who went off at half-time in the clash with Leicester City last weekend with a hamstring injury.
Bullen will be keen to make it in to the squad with it being his last game in the blue and white stripes, and Laws will be prepared to give him until the last minute to prove his fitness.
But Laws has no fresh injury concerns going in to the clash with the Canaries, and even has the possibility of a few new faces to choose from who’re returning from injury.
Midfield duo Graham Kavanagh and Sean McAllister are both expected to return to the Wednesday squad following injuries, but it’s unknown whether Laws will thrust them both back in to the starting eleven or stick with Adam Bolder and Steve Watson.
Player to watch: Franck Songo’o
The Portsmouth loanee has been key for the Owls since his arrival, and he’ll no doubt relish the chance to play in front of a packed Hillsborough and give Wednesday one last moment of magic to keep them up.
Norwich City Team News:
Norwich come to Hillsborough with nothing to play for, but that’s not the case for one man who ends his career at S6 tomorrow.
Dion Dublin will play his last professional match before retirement tomorrow, while former Leeds United man Darren Huckerby is also set to play his final game for the Canaries – both are expected to get impressive reactions from the fans.
Player to watch: Dion Dublin
The former Manchester United man will be keen to finish his professional career on a high, but hopefully it won’t be at the expense of Wednesday’s Championship status!
Match Facts & Stats
Wednesday wins: 19
Norwich wins: 14
Last Time Out:
Norwich 0-1 Wednesday
Carrow Road, 29/09/07
It was Norwich who were in deep relegation trouble when the Owls’ visited Carrow Road, and Wednesday picked up a slender 1-0 victory thanks to a second half Wade Small strike.
Wednesday: Grant, Bullen (Johnson 46), Wood, Beevers, Spurr, Watson, Bolder, Sahar (Clarke 84), Songo’o (Wallwork 73), Burton, Slusarski. Subs Not Used: Esajas, Burch.
Norwich: Marshall, Otsemobor, Shackell, Doherty, Bertrand, Huckerby, Fotheringham, Gibbs (Russell 77), Pattison (Chadwick 63), Cureton (Dublin 77), Evans. Subs Not Used: Croft, Pearce.