Sheffield Wednesday: Stu’s old club aid Owls

Stuart Gray was a coach and manager at Southampton
Stuart Gray was a coach and manager at Southampton
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Wednesday will make an early start to their Easter campaign and receive help from Bournemouth’s local rivals Southampton in a their bid to spoil the promotion-chasing Cherries’ party tomorrow.

The Owls leave at 9am today on their 216-mile trip to the South Coast and will train at Saints’ training ground at Marchwood, near the docks.

The link arises from Stuart Gray’s spell as a coach and manager at the St Mary’s club.

He hopes that working in a Premier League set-up will inspire his players as they get set to take on Bournemouth team who have launched a late challenge for the play-offs.

“We’re doing things a bit differently, setting off very early and we’ll be training at Southampton’s place, so it will be nice for the players to see a Premier League set-up and hopefully that will inspire us to one day get there, with the facilities they have,” he said.

“We’ll spend the night in a hotel then hopefully get the three points that we want.

“We’ll have a recovery session on Saturday, and hopefully we won’t get any knocks or suspensions.”

Gray’s plans will also take into account the home game against Charlton on Monday.

“You do have to have one eye on the two games,” said Gray, confirming that if Glenn Loovens plays tomorrow then he will have to be “wary” about fielding him three days later so soon after a hamstring injury.

Gray has talked to Portsmouth caretaker boss Andy Awford about Rhys McCabe, who is on loan at Pompey for the rest of the season but has started only one game. It is likely that McCabe will play on Saturday and the Owls will not be recalling him early.