Owls boss stirred by promotion memory

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Gary Megson will be bidding to repeat one of the Owls’ glory days of the last 30 years.

He has never forgotten how the club sealed promotion in 1984 and returned to the top division after an absence of 14 years.

The feat was confirmed when a team including Megson beat Crystal Palace 1-0 at Hillsborough in front of a crowd of 27,287, in the fifth-from-last match of the season.

Howard Wilkinson’s side were already virtually assured of going up with six games to spare, after rivals Manchester City and Grimsby slipped up.

But the celebrations began in earnest after a Mel Sterland penalty clinched victory against Palace.

Megson, now Owls manager, has picked out that memorable day as one of the highlights of his time at the club.

“Being promoted here was fantastic when we had been out of the top flight for so long,” he said.

“We were always going to get promoted because we were that far ahead. It was just a case of waiting for the time when we stepped over the line.

“I can remember playing against Crystal Palace and it was a fantastic occasion.”

His goal now is to bring back the good times, starting with the aim of success in League One before a challenge for a Premier League spot can be constructed.

The team against Palace was: Hodge, Sterland, Shirtliff, Lyons, Madden, Worthington, Megson, Shelton, Varadi, Cunningham (Bannister), J Pearson.

Megson’s nostalgia also stretches to the FA Cup semi-final against Everton in 1986 - to this day he finds it remarkable how rivals fans mixed so well, at Villa Park.

Everton won 2-1 after extra time but lost 3-1 to Liverpool in the final and were runners-up to their local rivals in the race for the title. The Owls finished fifth in the league. But Megson has yet to forge an outstanding memory as Wednesday manager - though he did enjoy the 4-0 home win against Tranmere in April as an example of what can be achieved.

He says: “To be honest, there hasn’t been a proud moment or something I have been really pleased about yet.

“The standards set at this club are way higher than that, and my own standards aren’t to just win a few games to keep us up.”