Q&A With Sheffield Wednesday

  • October 18, 2013 | By Robert Hurst
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/0c5dc

As Bolton prepare to host Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, we have got the views of an Owls supporter ahead of the game.

Wanderers recorded their first league victory of the season before the international break, winning 2-1 at Birmingham City, as they moved out of the Championship's bottom three for the first time since August.

That win leaves Wednesday as the only second-tier side yet to taste success in a game so far this campaign. Ahead of their trip to the Reebok Stadium this weekend, we have got the views of Eddie Hoyland from Owls website Wednesdayite. Eddie is 36 years old and attended his first game in 1983, as his beloved side won 4-2 at Darlington in the League Cup. His favourite all-time player is John Harkes, who represented the club between 1990 and 1993.

In our latest edition of Q&A, Eddie shares his thoughts on Wednesday's poor start to the new season, England's World Cup qualification and which trio of Wanderers players could provide a major threat to his side's hopes of a second successive win at the Reebok.

Q: Sheffield Wednesday occupy 22nd place in the Championship after a lackluster start to the season - with the Owls managing six draws and no wins in their opening 10 games. Did expect this before the season started?

A: Even the most pessimistic Owls fan wouldn't have looked at the squad and the schedule and picked a total of zero wins thus far.

We've been unlucky at times, poor at others but generally very close to where we need to be to win games at this level. A lack of a true goalscorer is the most glaring issue for us and has been for a long time.

Q: Do you think Wednesday can turn their fortunes around and where do you expect them to finish this season?

A: Absolutely, we can turn it around. We've led in games six times so far this season and haven't been able to close out a win - that tells you that we have what it takes to compete.

However, morale is low at the moment amongst players and fans. If we can scrape together enough points to be out of the bottom-six by Christmas, we'll probably finish comfortably in mid-table. If not then it's going to be another last-day nail-biter.

Q: Meanwhile, Bolton sit just two places above the Owls, having picked up their first win of the season in the last match before the international break. Have you been surprised by the Wanderers poor start?

A: Even more surprised than at the Owls' struggles. You guys were on fire at the back end of last season and I had you pegged for promotion this time out.

It just goes to show what a crazy division this is, year after year.

Q: Who will finish higher this season - Bolton or Sheffield Wednesday?

A: If it's not Bolton then you should be very disappointed, given the aspirations back in August.

Q: Championship football is back after an international break. What's your view on international football and did you watch any of the World Cup qualifiers?

A: International football should be the pinnacle of the game - that it's second to the Premier League and the Champions League in the hearts of many players shows how far it's fallen.

I am still a passionate England fan and regard the World Cup as the footballing highlight of the calendar, so our qualification was a very welcome sight. As much as Wednesday is my first love, to see an England team even match the heroics of 1990 would be one of my biggest dreams in football.

Q: Experienced Wednesday midfielder David Prutton looks set to miss this match after picking up an injury in training. Do you think the team will be lacking without him?

A: Prutts was one of the key players in our great form after Christmas, last season. This time out he's struggled to dominate in midfield and most Wednesday fans wouldn't see him as a serious miss if he were unable to play.

Q: Who should Bolton be wary of from the Wednesday teamsheet?

A: Talismanic skipper Reda Johnson is as dangerous rampaging forward and from set-pieces as he is to the health of opposition wingers. Other than that, it's pace you need to worry about - Michail Antonio, Jeremy Helan and Jermaine Johnson are blessed with plenty, and on their day can tear a defence apart.

Q: Which Wanderers player do you think Dave Jones will be telling his charges to keep an eye out for?

A: Obviously, Jermaine Beckford has a high profile from his time at Leeds United and Everton - but I always have an eye on midfielders and in Jay Spearing you have one of the best in the division.

Chris Eagles is one of the classiest players around - so if he's not getting a game then I worry about what we have to face down those wings too!

Q: Finally, what do you think the final score will be at the Reebok on Saturday?

A: Wednesday could desperately do with a win, whichever way it comes, but I've got to be honest and think a 2-1 victory for Wanderers is the most likely.

Burnden Aces would like to thank Eddie for taking the time to answer our questions. You can read more from him by following him on Twitter - @sausagearms - or at wednesdayite.com.

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
2 Peterborough United 4 9
3 Portsmouth 4 8
4 Bolton Wanderers 4 8
5 Exeter City 4 7
6 Charlton Athletic 4 7
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