New Orleans-based Sheffield Wednesday fan to watch Wycombe Wanderers match with Chairboys’ owner Rob Couhig

When Sheffield Wednesday take on Wycombe Wanderers on Saturday afternoon, two men 4,500 miles away in New Orleans will be watching on with interest.

Friday, 26th November 2021, 6:35 pm

One of them is the Chairboys’ American owner Rob Couhig, who is based in The Big Easy, while the other is an expat Wednesdayite who has called the city his home for the last 16 years.

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Owls-mad Jamie Midgley, aged 53, is originally from Norfolk Park but now lives across the continent with his American wife Jenny and their six-year-old daughter Madeleine.

Jamie, third from right, with the New Orleans Owls.

"We came here for a weekend and fell in love with the place,” he told The Star.

Jamie is the driving force behind the New Orleans Owls, which proudly boasts a dozen members and regularly meets at Irish pub Finn McCool's to watch their beloved Wednesday on iFollow.

And this weekend they will have a special guest.

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Handyman Jamie had been watching an Owls match at Finn McCool's earlier this month when a friend gave him the idea about inviting Rob – a lawyer who has twice stood unsuccessfully for election as mayor of New Orleans - to watch the fixture together.

He said: “I texted him to invite him and he said yeah. I think he’s coming with his wife, Missy.

"He asked if we can use his iFollow stream so we can get the Wycombe commentary.

"He’s got to leave at half time because he's got a family wedding so we’ll switch over to John Pearson.”

Rather than drawing battle lines between the potential promotion rivals, Jamie, who plans to visit Hillsborough when he is back in Sheffield over Christmas and New Year, is keen to build bridges.

He added: "It was my birthday a few weeks ago and my friends got me a $200 bar tab for Finn McCool's.

"I’m putting it behind the bar for all of us and him. I’ll dispel the myth about Yorkshiremen being tight.”

The New Orleans Owls are one of several fan groups based in the Americas along with the New York Owls, Brazil Owls and Sheffield Wednesday Argentina, among others.

They are planning their second national meet up in New York in April to watch Sheffield Wednesday take on Wimbledon at Hillsborough, with Owls fans everywhere also invited.

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