Sheffield Wednesday: Owls told to beware of Leeds backlash

Owls defender Joe Mattock challenges Ipswich forward Conor Sammon
Owls defender Joe Mattock challenges Ipswich forward Conor Sammon
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Left-back Joe Mattock has warned his Sheffield Wednesday teammates that Leeds United will be intent on exacting revenge when the two Yorkshire clubs collide at Elland Road this weekend.

When the two sides last met in January, the Owls trounced 10-men Leeds 6-0 in front of the Sky cameras after strikes by Reda Johnson, Atdhe Nuhiu, Connor Wickham, Chris Maguire and a late double by substitute Caolan Lavery.

Mattock, an unused substitute in the previous meeting, is predicting a Leeds backlash.

He told The Star: “It was a bit of am embarrassment for them. There is no doubt about it that Leeds will come out of the traps quickly. Leeds have been good this year and are a strong side. They are going to be up for it but so will we.

“We are looking forward to it. It’s going to be a big match and the atmosphere will be unbelievable. Hopefully we can put in another good display like we did last year.

“We are going to stick together and not let the Ipswich result bother us. We are going to take the positives out of it and hopefully we will get the three points for the team and for the fans.

“Hopefuilly it will be a similar outcome to the last time we played them!”

The Leicester-born player said the team were disappointed not to pick up maximum points against Ipswich in midweek after taking the lead through Atdhe Nuhiu.

“It was a tough game,” he admitted. “They were very physical. We knew they were going to be strong opposition.

“We were disappointed not to get the three points but we didn’t lose so we have to take the positives and look forward to the next game.

“Ipswich are a good side and we have matched them. We have got good characters and hopefully we will get the three points on Saturday.”

Mattock felt aggrieved at Ipswich’s controversial equaliser, claiming substitute Jonny Williams controlled the ball with his hand before rifling a right foot shot past Keiren Westwood.

He said: “I thought it was a handball but it happened pretty quick. Sometimes decisions go your way and sometimes they don’t. I thought we were a bit unfortunate.

The defender, an ever present this season, praised Claude Dielna’s performance. The French centre-half came on for Kamil Zayatte, who limped off with a hamstring problem, six minutes before half-time.

“We have good characters in the team,” he said. “We have got good depth.

“Claude came in and did a good job. He’s a strong player and coped well with their attacks.

“Claude has settled in very well. He has had to wait for his chance to get into the side but he did well.”

The 24-year-old believes Wednesday possess the ingredients to challenge for a play-off spot.

Mattock said: “The only way is up for me and the rest of the team. There is no doubt we can keep pushing. We have had a good start.

“We don’t want to be dropping into the bottom half of the table. I think we have a strong enough side to be in the top six. For me, that’s realistic.”