The missing ingredient

Owls boss: Gary Megson
Owls boss: Gary Megson
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GARY Megson has never stepped back from a battle.

As a player he was combative. His former colleagues have described him as someone they wanted alongside them when the going got tough. His love for Sheffield Wednesday is unquestionable, as is his ability at getting clubs promoted.

The one thing he can’t do, though, is practise what he preaches out on the pitch. As the Owls prepare for tomorrow’s match at Yeovil Town, Megson has admitted he’s willing to try anything to end the club’s poor away form but realises the answer remains simple.

He said: “I always look at myself. We can come up with all sorts of theories; are the staff sat in the right places on the bus, are we having the right meals on the bus, is the hotel okay?

“It’s a load of old cobblers. The only thing is the players that you’ve got. You don’t abdicate responsibility. Everyone looks at the manager and you respect that.

“This is one of the most difficult jobs in the country without a shadow of a doubt, but it is one of the best. But there are lots of things you have to contend with.

“I’ve never done it but I’d imagine bank managers look at themselves

when things go wrong. I’m not suggesting this is the case here but in football sometimes people look at each other.

“Every player needs to look at themselves and maybe we’ll start getting somewhere.”

The manner of defeat at Stevenage on Tuesday has led to widespread concern that the Owls aren’t the promotion contenders they were predicted to be. The fact remains Wednesday are just four points from top spot in League One and are 100 percent at home.

Megson said: “Everything at Sheffield Wednesday is magnified by ten. We have to cope with that. We have another 19 away from home. We’re having a lot of long trips that we have to cope with. But the players couldn’t be better looked after at this level. By the time half way (23

matches) comes we’ll have played 13 away and 10 at home. It (the away form) will be an issue for us. Unless someone else has got a magic wand my only thought is that we go there with the players that we’ve got, accept that the opposition will come at us and fight fire with fire.”

Teams and ref

Yeovil (possible): Steer, Ayling, Huntingdon, Ehmer, Jones, Edgar, Upson, Wotton, O’Brien, MacLean, Agard (4-4-1-1).

Owls (possible): O’Donnell, Buxton, Bennett, Jones, Batth, Palmer, Prutton, Semedo, Marshall, Madine, Morrison (4-4-2).

Brendan Malone (Wiltshire): Hasn’t been shy in brandishing his yellow card - 33 times in seven matches.

One to watch

Steven MacLean: Forever in the hearts of Wednesdayites for his penalty that forced extra time in the play-off final of 2005 against Hartlepool. He has had a steady start to this season. Two goals in six appearances still mark him down as a danger man for the Glovers.

History lesson

Not the biggest of rivalries over the years. The teams first met in the FA Cup of 1938/39, Wednesday winning 2-1 at Hillsborough after drawing the first match 1-1 in Somerset. last season the Owls won 2-0 at Huish Park - Jermaine Johnson and a Tommy Miller penalty - in October and drew 2-2 - Gary Madine on his home debut and Reda Johnson - in January.