VIDEO: Sheffield Wednesday legend David Hirst says nerves could play part in Wembley clash with Hull City
Owls legend David Hirst believes nerves could be a key factor in the Championship Play-Off final.
Buoyed after knocking out Brighton and Hove Albion in the semi-finals, Wednesday will take on Hull City in the showpiece fixture at Wembley this Saturday.
A place in the Premier League and a lucrative £170m prize pot is up for grabs.
Speaking on the You-Are-The-Ref show, ex-Wednesday striker Hirst said: “Nerves will come into it. This will be the biggest game that some of those players have played in their lives.
“Unfortunately for some of them, it will probably the biggest game they will ever play in.
“Hopefully the nerves go to one side after the first couple of minutes and we get an exciting game.”
Hull booked their place in the final after a nervy two-leg tie with Derby County. The Tigers, relegated from the top-flight last season, held off a spirited Rams fightback to secure a 3-2 aggregate win.
Nonetheless, Steve Bruce’s men are favourites to reach the promised land, having finished nine points above the Owls during the regular season.
But Hirst, who’s son George penned a pro contract with Wednesday earlier this year, fancies his old club to cap off a fine year in style.
“I expect a tough, hard-fought battle between two good, talented sides,” said the former England international. “It’s difficult to pick a winner out of the two.
“On the day, if Sheffield Wednesday perform as they did in the first leg against Brighton, then I think they should cruise to a comfortable result. We know what happened with Hull and when Derby came out at them.
“But it’s a big old pitch at Wembley and it suits the footballing side and I think Wednesday have got the edge on that front. I think Hull are a little bit more route one.”