Owls: Exeter read to give Sheffield Wednesday a tough test

Thoughtful: Exeter City boss Paul Tisdale is plotting Owls downfall.
Thoughtful: Exeter City boss Paul Tisdale is plotting Owls downfall.
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EXETER are drawing inspiration from the recent visit of leaders Charlton as they bid to take the big scalp of the Owls today.

The Grecians feel that they came close to some reward and were beaten only by a fluke goal when the Addicks visited St James Park a fortnight ago.

Today it is Wednesday’s turn to face a club who are fighting for their League One lives against a background of severe financial restrictions.

Director of football Steve Perryman is undeterred by the task facing his team against second-placed Wednesday: “We saw a team competing equally as well in Charlton in our last home game, and we only lost by a freak goal.

“Hopefully we can put on a similar performance, but not concede and hopefully give the supporters something to cheer.”

Charlton’s winner came when keeper Artur Krysiak misjudged a near-post cross by winger Danny Green.

That goal also ended a run of three successive clean sheets for Exeter, before they also lost 2-0 at Bournemouth on Tuesday.

Since last season, when they did the double over the Owls and finished eighth, the Grecians has lost several important players, including playmaker Ryan Harley and striker Jamie Cureton in the summer, and left back Scott Golbourne to Barnsley last month.

Crowds at St James Park have gone down, manager Paul Tisdale has no money to use on loan players, and the team have won only one of their last 10 games - 2-0 at Chesterfield on January 7.

The clubs have made various cutbacks, and coaches Andy Tillson and Marcus Stewart have had to go part-time.

It may seem like a tale of woe but Gary Megson will have no sympathy about that: “Teams always play differently when they play us,” he says, expecting the home side to raise their game.

But the Owls were too good for Scunthorpe when they won 3-1 away to the struggling Iron recently and will hope for same again today.

Exeter boss Tisdale said: “There will come a point soon when, if the crowds don’t go back up and we stay where we are, we will have to readjust our financial expectations.

“Right now, our attention is about staying in this league. We’re not going to give up and we will continue to get value for our players, we will be spirited and apply ourselves to the point where we can be a solid League One club.”