Sheffield Wednesday: Ince lines up Jones clash

Dave Jones in the stand at Blackpool when he was banned from the touhline; with him is Owls vice-chairman Paul Aldridge
Dave Jones in the stand at Blackpool when he was banned from the touhline; with him is Owls vice-chairman Paul Aldridge
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While Dave Jones fights to keep his job after a rocky spell for the Owls, rival Paul Ince will be coming back from a different sort of bother on Saturday.

Ince, who wanted the Wednesday job before Jones got it, will be on the touchline at Blackpool after serving a five-match stadium ban.

Jones will be there as well - but he was in the stand when the teams drew 0-0 at Bloomfield Road in April.

The Owls boss was barred from the touchline for two games after a confronation with a ref at Bristol City and a flare-up involving Brighton coach Charlie Oatway at Hillsborough.

Ince, who played under Jones at Wolves, was banned from grounds for five games by the FA for violent conduct towards a match official during a 2-1 win at Bournemouth in September.

An FA document said that Ince violently pushed the fourth official and repeatedly threatened to “knock him out” before being dragged away.

Ince led MK Dons to promotion but was out of work when the Owls job became vacant after the sacking of Gary Megson, 21 months ago.

The ex-England midfield player said at the time: “I don’t think there would be many managers who wouldn’t want to manage a fantastic club like Sheffield Wednesday.

“I’m looking forward to getting back in the game. If the right opportunity comes along, I’m always happy to talk to whoever wants to use my services.

“I just hope Wednesday get the right man. If Milan Mandaric wanted to talk to me, of course I’d like to talk to him.”

But the Wednesday chairman had already lined up Jones and it was a successful appointment as the Owls, having seemed to be heading for the play-offs, overtook United and stormed to automatic promotion.

Ince returned to the game as Blackpool boss in February and led them to a club record-breaking start to this season. The Bournemouth incident occurred after he was angered by the sending-off of one of his players and was himself dismissed after inadvertently hitting a fan with a plastic bottle as he reacted to his side missing a late chance.

Ince thought the FA verdict was “very harsh” and said at the time: “Some of the stuff in the report I admitted - but some of it is completely wrong.

“It’s a passionate game and I want my teams to play with passion so this won’t take the passion away from me, my staff and my players.”

He watched Blackpool’s 1-1 draw at Birmingham last Saturday via a TV link, and says: “This has taught me to keep my mouth shut. It has been weird and strange.

“It’s hard when you can’t get the messages you want to your players. but you have to learn from your mistakes and move on.

“I’m looking forward to being on the touchline against Sheffield Wednesday. I’m glad it’s over now, and if we play like we did in the second half we can get three points against Sheffield Wednesday.”