Sheffield Wednesday: Let’s be hot not cold at Bournemouth urges Gray

Stuart Gray does not want a repeat of the Owls' last meeting with Bournemouth, which saw Royston Drenthe sent off
Stuart Gray does not want a repeat of the Owls' last meeting with Bournemouth, which saw Royston Drenthe sent off
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When it comes to facing Bournemouth, Wednesday have been chalk and cheese in their last two matches.

And that is something Stuart Gray will not shy away from reminding his players of.

Exactly a year ago today, the Owls produced a stunning 4-2 win over the Cherries at the Goldsands Stadium, despite having Sam Hutchinson sent off.

But after one of last season’s highs came one of the lowest points off this campaign as Wednesday completely capitulated in the clash at Hillsborough earlier this season.

Royston Drenthe was sent off after an hour and the Owls collapsed to a 2-0 defeat.

Gray was furious with his side’s performance and afterwards kept the players locked in the dressing room for almost an hour.

Bournemouth have gone from strength to strength since that November meeting and victory over the Owls would see them top the Championship heading into the final two games of the season.

And Gray says his players must be aware that anything less than a fully committed performance will result in another bad day at the office.

“I can always remind the players of that performance,” Gray said. “They beat us convincingly.

“I was disappointed. Our standards were probably not as high as what we had been playing at before.

“I was frustrated and annoyed because Royston was unfortunate to get sent off.

“And we didn’t respond well with ten men. I was disappointed with our reaction because I thought Bournemouth were there for the beating and it was an even game.

“We conceded a sloppy goal and suddenly when we went down to ten men we lost that self belief.

“We have done sessions 11v10 and it can be very difficult to beat ten men. But we did it before with Bournemouth.

“We beat a very good Bournemouth team with ten men the year before so that was the frustrating thing.

“When we played them at home, I felt it knocked us back. Out of adversity sometimes, you’ve got to respond.”

The Owls head coach insists he will not only have warnings ringing in his players’ ears as they walk out at the Goldsands Stadium.

Gray is keen for it to be remembered what happened the last time Wednesday visited Dorset.

He said: “I can remind the players of our performance there last season.

“It’s a great game on Saturday and one we are looking forward to.”

READ MORE: Click here for all the latest news from Hillsborough