We need to win the crowd

Looking ahead: Michael Morrison wants to impress.
Looking ahead: Michael Morrison wants to impress.
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michael Morrison believes that a winning mentality must be instilled into the Owls as they seek immediate results and plan for the long-term future.

The defender sees this season’s run-in not only as chance for the team to belatedly hit consistent form and climb further away from the bottom four but also as a stepping stone towards a brighter 2011-12 campaign.

The Owls are still only four points off the relegation zone as they get set to take on mid-table Brentford at Hillsborough tonight.

“One win and we’ll be seven points away from it; then you’re not looking over your shoulder quite so much,” said Morrison, hoping for success after three successive Hillsborough defeats.

“We need to start making it an advantage, playing at home,” he added. “I hear fans saying that it’s better to play away. But at home we should be turning these draws and defeats into victories.

“There’s no reason why we can’t, and that can build some momentum.

“It’s about getting the winning mentality back in the club. It’s not there; we haven’t been winning enough games.

“If you can instil that into the club, you’re halfway there.

“Everybody signed here because they wanted to play in front of 20,000 and this is the opportunity to do it. Not to enjoy it here is crazy. We should be relishing it. It’s not worked out that way.

“I’m really looking forward to getting some wins and giving the fans something to shout about.”

Morrison pointed out that only the harsh penalty decision at Dagenham cost the team victory.

Gary Megson has stressed that this incident was not the reason for his complaint to the FA.

His letter concerns the officials; a conversation between the referee and Daggers manager John Still at half time, and confusion when Rob Jones was trying to get back on the pitch:

“There were one or two things that I found really strange, The referee told Chris Evans and Tommy Miller when they were going in that the manager can talk to the referee, but only half an hour after the end of 90 minutes.

“John Still is a great bloke. This isn’t against him at all. I didn’t didn’t realise he spoke to him before the game as well.

We aint supposed to do that.It just creates an impression that if that can work and help you, we should all be doing it, and then the referee’s job will be even harder.

“I don’t expect any joy from this. It’s about the performance of the officials, not me.

“I’m not looking to vindicate what I did. Sometimes I do get carried away on the line and my language is poor. I don’t like doing it. I just lose it sometimes. I turn around and there are kids and ladies around. I’m not pleased when I do that. But it’s difficult not to get carried away when you see some of the things that were happening on Saturday.”

Megson said he did not know if would be banned from the touchline: “If I’m in the stand it’s no big deal; if it costs me a few quid it won’t be the first time. We need to move on from that.”

Morrison has twice been excluded from the match 18, but is back in at right-back and played his part in Saturday’s 1-1 draw. He said: “Everybody is playing for their future. Results haven’t gone well. The gaffer will be looking to bring players in. I have to make sure he’s not looking to replace me.”

Morrison’s direct opponent is likely to be Myles Weston, the left winger who was wanted by Irvine in January but was not for sale.

Isaiah Osbourne’s recovery from a hip injury could mean his return to central midfield tonight, alongside Joey O’Brien and captain Tommy Miller, and perhaps increase the chances of Megson sticking with a 4-5-1 formation.

The Owls chief may ponder the left-back spot.

He took off Mark Reynolds in the 67th minute on Saturday, and felt it worked when he sent on Lewis Buxton to quell a threat from right winger Danny Green. Tommy Spurr could be another option.

Megson has been told by O’Brien that the midfield man came through his first senior game in more than two years without ill effect.

O’Brien, playing in front of the back four, was effective in a largely aerial battle; different to his Premier League experience with Bolton.

Megson said: “Joey texted a friend of mine, saying ‘I got through the game; 52 headers and three passes!’”


The Teams

OWLS (possible): O’Donnell, M Morrison, Batth, R Jones, Reynolds, Sedgwick, Osbourne, O’Brien, Miller, Teale, Madine (4-5-1).

BEES (possible): Moore, O’Connor, Legge, Balkenstein, Woodman, Reed, Bean, Diagouraga, Weston, Alexander, Schlupp (4-4-2).

The Referee

Andy Haines (Tyne and Wear): Came under fire from Sheffield United for controversial decisions as they lost 2-1 at home to Norwich on January 22. Even Canaries boss Paul Lambert sympathised with Micky Adams.