Sheffield Wednesday: Gray’s gunning for revenge at Birmingham

Owls boss Stuart Gray
Owls boss Stuart Gray
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Sheffield Wednesday head coach Stuart Gray insists the 2013 thrashing at Birmingham City will act as added motivation when the Owls travel to St Andrews tomorrow.

Nearly twelve months ago, the Owls, under Dave Jones, lost 4-1 at Birmingham courtesy of four goals by Manchester United youngster Jesse Lingard.

But Gray, speaking after Saturday’s goalless draw at Bolton Wanderers, a result which extended their unbeaten away run to four matches, is confident they can pick up a positive result.

He told The Star: “We got a spanking at Birmingham last year when Jesse Lingard scored four times.

“I will be reminding the boys of that result. But we are in good form. Five out of the next seven matches are away from home. I’m pleased with the performances the boys are putting in but it’s the end product which is the most important thing.”

First-choice shot-stopper Keiren Westwood reckons that defeat will have no bearing on tomorrow’s encounter.

“It’s a new season and start for everybody,” he said. “There were a few unwanted records from last season which the lads probably wanted to shake off.

“We look at the opposition but we don’t worry about them. We want them to worry about us.”

Westwood is delighted with their defensive record. Gray’s side have recorded five shut-outs from their opening eight fixtures.

He said: “We are all working hard for each other. It started from the first day of the season at Brighton where we worked exceptionally hard. We’ve built momentum on top of that. It’s a good foundation to keep clean sheets. It helps you win games and pick up points. Long may that continue.”

The Owls deserved to win at Bolton, according to Westwood. He said: “I thought we did okay. We’ve come away from home and a 0-0 in the Championship is a decent result but on the balance of play we are a little disappointed we didn’t get the win.”

“With the chances we had, it would have been nice to come away with the victory. If we had won, no one could have said we would have stolen it.”

Forward Hallam Hope, on loan from Everton, missed the trip to Bolton due to a hamstring problem and could comeback into the reckoning for the meeting with Birmingham.