SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY: Derby opponents have a lot to live up to

Key result:  Miguel Llera, first goalscorer in the 2-0 win at Huddersfield, celebrates with team-mates.                                 Picture: steve ellis
Key result: Miguel Llera, first goalscorer in the 2-0 win at Huddersfield, celebrates with team-mates. Picture: steve ellis
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FIRST came one of the most entertaining Hillsborough games in years.

Then when the teams met again it was a key result for Wednesday.

Will the third clash in the recent series between the Owls and Huddersfield be just as extraordinary in its own way? Fans will hope so, so long as their team win.

Both of last season’s games were memorable, which adds to the attractiveness of tonight’s Yorkshire derby at Hillsborough.

It could also be billed as an opportunity to judge which of the clubs has improved most since last season.

Each has a chance to compare the opposition to other, more established Championship sides that they have already faced.

Huddersfield go into the game on the back of a 1-0 home win last Saturday against Derby, with whom Wednesday drew 2-2 at Pride Park on the first day of the season.

History will be of no importance to most of the players who will be at the heart of tonight’s contest.

Only a handful of survivors remain from the great battles of last season, but there is some continuity with the managers, Dave Jones and Simon Grayson.

Gary Megson and Lee Clark were in charge of their respective sides for the 4-4 thriller at Hillsborough last December.

By the time the clubs met again, in April, Jones and Grayson had taken over the batons in the race for League One promotion.

Jordan Rhodes is one man about whom the Owls do not have to worry this time

The striker who scored all of his team’s goals at Hillsborough in December was kept quiet, mainly by Danny Batth, when Wednesday won 2-0 at the Galpharm Stadium.

Rhodes’s four goals grabbed the headlines back in December.

He put the Terriers two up inside 16 minutes.

Rob Jones and Reda Johnson pulled it back to 2-2 in a two-minute spell before half time.

The Owls surged into a 4-2 lead with strikes from Ben Marshall and Chris O’Grady in the 63rd and 74th minutes, and seemed to be heading for a brilliant victory.

But Rhodes made it 4-3 in the 78th minute and raced away to equalise in the sixth minute of stoppage time.

Megson was dismayed by the Owls’ “lack of savvy” in failing to protect their lead.

When the teams met again it was at Easter in the sixth-from-last match of the season - and it was widely regarded as something of a crunch game for both sides. even though it alone would not decide who went up.

The Owls turned in one of their best away performances of the season and triumphed with goals from Miguel Llera and Nile Ranger.

Llera’s was his first for the club, and it was a brilliant long-range free kick - the first demonstration of the potency of his left foot, which this season has been recently employed to provide inswinging corners from the right.

Rhodes has made an £8m move to Blackurn after chipping in with two goals for Huddersfield this season, in a 1-1 home draw with Forest and 2-0 home win against Burnley.

The Terriers’ other results have been a 2-0 exit from the Capital One Cup at Preston, a 1-0 defeat in a Championship opener at Cardiff, and in recent weeks a 2-2 draw at Ipswich followed by the win against Derby.

Former Owls midfielder Tommy Miller is one of the many players who have departed from the Wednesday or Huddersfield camps since last season’s tussles: he joined Swindon on a free in the summer.