James takes a spot of advice

Celebration time: Wednesday players show their delight after James O'Connor's effort seals a 4-2 shoot-out win against Blackpool in the Carling Cup first round
Celebration time: Wednesday players show their delight after James O'Connor's effort seals a 4-2 shoot-out win against Blackpool in the Carling Cup first round
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cup match-winner James O’Connor plans to take a leaf out of Gary Megson’s book when he eventually becomes a manager.

O’Connor was one of the Owls players who were told by Megson that they were taking penalties in the Carling Cup shoot-out against Blackpool.

James O'Connor's effort seals a 4-2 shoot-out win against Blackpool in the Carling Cup first round

James O'Connor's effort seals a 4-2 shoot-out win against Blackpool in the Carling Cup first round

It was the first time in the experienced midfield man’s career that he had seen a manager issue a list without first asking for volunteers.

Megson did it to take pressure off the players and place the responsibility on his own shoulders.

It worked for the club and O’Connor, who hit the decisive spot-kick to seal the Owls’ 4-2 win and book tonight’s tie at Blackburn.

He would have no qualms about taking a penalty at Ewood Park and plans to adopt Megson’s policy should he achieve his aim of moving into management after hanging up his boots.

Said O’Connor: “It’s been jotted down in the book for the future!

“I’ve got no problem about taking a penalty anyway, but I thought it was very clever of the manager. He told the players who was taking them and then said ‘it’s my fault if you miss’.

“So I think he took the pressure off the players.

“ I thought that worked really well for the players.

“It’s the first time I’ve seen it. Normally the manager will ask who wants to take a penalty.

“I’ve learned something from what he did. He made a very valid point.”

But O’Connor hopes that the Owls can cause an upset tonight and go through without the need for extra time or penalties.

O’Connor could return, with Megson likely to make changes, though the manager he is not saying if there will be as many as the 10 that were made for the Blackpool match, which was played on a Thursday.

O’Donnell, who saved the Seasiders’ first effort in the shoot-out, could play again, with Nicky Weaver possibly give a rest.

Weaver returned against Notts County after missing the midweek game at Bury with a swollen knee.

Stoke have given permission for loan winger Ben Marshall to play if required, but Megson is set to save him for Saturday’s visit of Scunthorpe.

Rob Jones is still out with a broken nose. Jermaine Johnson could resume training by the end of this week.

MATCHFACTS

The Teams

ROVERS (possible): Bunn, Salgado, Givet, Hanley, Olsson, Hoilett, Petrovic, Nzonzi, Pedersen, Goodwillie, Roberts. (4-4-2).

OWLS (possible): O’Donnell, Otsemobor, R Johnson, Beevers, Reynolds, Sedgwick, O’Connor, Coke, D Jones, Uchechi, Madine (4-4-2).

The Referee

David Webb (Lancashire): He has already issued 13 yellow cards and one red, in only four games this season. His last outing was Dagenham and Redbridge’s 1-0 win at Bradford on Saturday.