It may only be the first month of the campaign but Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka admits his side cannot afford to lose many more games if they are to achieve their goal of promotion.
And after losing to the Owls twice last season, Karanka knows full well his side will have a tough task in avoiding another defeat when they visit Hillsborough tomorrow.
Hot promotion tip Boro have won just once in the league so far this term, drawing two and losing last weekend to Bristol City.
“This game is very important,” Karanka said. “We can’t lose many more games.
“But if we do then we have to remember that we have another nine months.
“The season is a marathon. Last year we finished the first month with six points, we came close to getting promoted automatically and played the final at Wembley.
“We can’t panic as we’re still in August, we have a good squad with very good players so we’re going to play against Sheffield Wednesday wanting to win.”
Karanka says his side should avoid dwelling on the double defeat of last season and be confident of their own abilities.
He said: “I expect a difficult game. They’re in the same position as us.
“I know the manager is from Portugal and it’s an organised team.
“We couldn’t beat them last season away or at home so they will want to win the game at Hillsborough.
“But we have to think about ourselves and we have to think we can win.”
Boro head to Hillsborough with the future of Albert Adomah in doubt after the winger handed in a transfer request.