Sheffield Wednesday: Keeping winning form a priority in Bury friendly

Ex-Owls striker Ryan Lowe will line up against his former club for Bury in tonight's friendly
Ex-Owls striker Ryan Lowe will line up against his former club for Bury in tonight's friendly
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Giving players game time may be Stuart Gray’s priority but he also wants the Owls to maintain a winning mentality against Bury tonight.

Wednesday head to Salford to take on the League Two side in their second pre-season outing, fresh from the 2-0 win at York City last weekend.

And head coach Gray is keen to see his side carry their winning form into next week’s training camp in Slovenia.

“People will always say it’s only pre-season but I want to keep that winning mentality,” Gray told the Star.

“It can never hurt you to have that winning feeling in the camp.

“The most important thing though is to get through the games with no injuries and getting minutes in the players’ legs.

“It is only our second game so minutes are vital at this stage.”

Glenn Loovens is set for his first outing after signing a new deal and being named the new Owls skipper on Sunday.

And Keiren Westwood is likely to get his first minutes in Wednesday colours after sitting out last weekend’s trip to York.

Kamil Zayatte could also play after having an injection in his ankle last week.

The centre half was expected to return to training this week.

Tonight’s friendly will be played at the AJ Bell Stadium – home of Salford City Reds – with renovation work at Gigg Lane ongoing.

A number of familiar faces will be present among Bury ranks, including midfielder Danny Mayor who left the Owls earlier this summer.

Mayor spent last season on loan with Bury, winning the players’ player of the year award, and was allowed to leave Hillsborough despite having a year left on his deal.

Ryan Lowe – a fan favourite from the 2011/12 promotion winning campaign – is back at Gigg Lane from where he was signed by Wednesday in 2011 while boyhood Owl Chris Sedgwick is also with the club.

Former Wednesday loanees midfielder Tom Soares (09/10) and keeper Shwan Jalal (06/07) both also look set to be part of the squad named by former Barnsley boss David Flitcroft.

Gray is expecting a ‘full-on’ test for his side tonight and more of the same throughout the pre-season programme.

He said: “Whenever you play against a British team, you’ve got to match their will, desire, hunger and commitment.

“Then you hope your quality comes out on top.

“We saw that at York with Chris Maguire’s goal which was top quality.

“There is never an easy game whether you are playing York, Bury, Doncaster Rovers or Barnsley.

“They will all be full-on games.

“As we build up the pre-season, we are going to come up against stronger opposition.

“We’ve got a couple of local derbies which will be good tests for us.”