We’ll pinch second spot

Owls v Preston....Owls two goal Gary Madine
Owls v Preston....Owls two goal Gary Madine
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GARY Madine believes that the Owls can hit their target of automatic promotion and that they have the best squad in League One.

The 17-goal striker says that second-placed Sheffield United rely heavily on Ched Evans but the Owls have more strength in depth and are “definitely” capable of finishing in the top two. “I think we’ve got the best squad out of everyone,” he said.

He was a spectator when the Blades beat Chesterfield 4-1 at home last week: “I went to see Sheffield United. Without Ched Evans they’re nothing really, whereas we have quality throughout.

“It was 1-1 at half time (against Chesterfield); he got himself a hat-trick. He was terrific, to be fair.”

Although the Owls are breathing down United’s necks in the chase for automatic promotion he knows they face an uphill task in their attempt to catch leaders Charlton: “If we can get second, I’ll be happy.”

Madine is also homing in on the 20-goal mark after notching a double in the 2-0 win against Preston.

“We were the better side. I should have had a hat-trick but I’ll take two goals. I thoroughly enjoyed it,” he said.

“It’s a lot easier doing my job when you’ve got Michail Antonio and Jermaine Johnson on the wings and Chris Lines and Jose Semedo coming through the middle. Long may that continue.

“If I was in the opposition and having to play against Michail and Jermaine, I’d be quaking in my boots.”

The 21-year-old is making up for lost time: “I was gutted to get injured for two months (with a broken toe). I’d like to think I would have been past the 20 mark by now. If I can get to 20 I’ll be happy.”

Madine feels the Owls just need to maintain their current form, after five wins and a draw under Dave Jones.

“He wants us to get it down a bit more than the previous manager did, and play and express ourselves. We’re showing that. We’re passing it and looking really good.

“We’re picking up good results, apart from the little blip against Walsall.”

Jones, who once considered signing Madine for Cardiff, said: “He’s improved. If he keeps listening and learning then hopefully he’ll go on to be an even better player. You should never think you’re the finished article.”