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Kings of Anglia Issue 9 Magazine Offer

Match preview: Sheffield Wednesday v Ipswich Town – Hurst on facing the club he grew up supporting

PUBLISHED: 06:00 25 August 2018

Ipswich Town boss Paul Hurst grew up supporting Sheffield Wednesday. Photo: Steve Waller

Ipswich Town boss Paul Hurst grew up supporting Sheffield Wednesday. Photo: Steve Waller

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Ipswich Town take on Sheffield Wednesday, at Hillsborough, in a Championship match this afternoon. STUART WATSON previews the action.

Jon Nolan is a minor doubt today after he rolled an ankle in the midweek defeat at Derby. Photo: Steve WallerJon Nolan is a minor doubt today after he rolled an ankle in the midweek defeat at Derby. Photo: Steve Waller

Paul Hurst says there will be no room for sentiment today when he leads Ipswich Town out at Sheffield Wednesday – the club he grew up supporting.

Born and raised in Sheffield, Hurst was a regular at Hillsborough along with his dad and brother during the ‘80s. There’s only one thing on his mind though and that’s securing his first win in charge of the Blues.

“They were my team growing up,” said the 43-year-old. “The first one was Gary Bannister and Gary Shelton when they reached the semi-final of the FA Cup (‘83) – I wasn’t allowed to go, I had to go swimming while my dad went down to Highbury! Then there was Brian Marwood, a very good team, and I watched them lose at Villa Park (in the FA Cup semis, ‘86) against Everton. Obviously they then won the (League) Cup with John Sheridan’s goal (in ‘91).

MORE: ‘I haven’t seen too much for us to fear’ – Hurst’s early assessment of the Championship

“They have had some very, very good times. The last few years have been a little frustrating for them, they have a few issues currently, but it’s still a very big football club and certainly one that’s well supported. That atmosphere, along with a good Ipswich following, is something I’m looking forward to experiencing.”

Hurst, who spent virtually his entire playing career for Rotherham, continued: “I got to play on the Hillsborough pitch quite a few times for Sheffield Boys and I’ve seen the stadium change over the years. I went to the game the other night and that brought back some memories. When you come out and the songs get going it kind of makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up a little.

“But, very much, come Saturday there is only one team I want to win – and that isn’t Sheffield Wednesday!

MORE: Roberts ready to play the role of super-sub

Paul Hurst grew up a Sheffield Wednesday fan and fondly remembers John Sheridan's winning goal against Manchester United in the League Cup Final at Wembley in 1991. Photo: PAPaul Hurst grew up a Sheffield Wednesday fan and fondly remembers John Sheridan's winning goal against Manchester United in the League Cup Final at Wembley in 1991. Photo: PA

“I’ve got friends who have told me they want Sheffield Wednesday to win, but not by too many. My family want me to win... I think they do, anyway!

“It’s a nice occasion for me, but I’m not getting too wrapped up in it. It will be a special moment to lead a team out at Hillsborough, but when that whistle goes it’s game on and we’re looking to get that first victory.”

After away defeats to Wigan and Brentford, either side of a home draw against Hull, the Owls secured their first league win of the season on Wednesday night when beating Millwall 2-1.

“They’ve changed system already, at times the personnel has changed too, so it’s not the easiest of games to prepare for,” admitted Hurst.

Cole Skuse chances of being involved today have been described as 'highly doubtful' by Paul Hurst after the midfielder aggrevated a quad injury in midweek. Photo: PagepixCole Skuse chances of being involved today have been described as 'highly doubtful' by Paul Hurst after the midfielder aggrevated a quad injury in midweek. Photo: Pagepix

“I don’t know exactly what they are going to do. They are giving quite a lot of young players opportunities when many fans would say they had stronger players on the bench. Whether or not he (Jos Luhukay) was just mixing it up in the middle of a Sunday-Wednesday-Saturday schedule, or whether they stick with a winning team I don’t know.

“But we know the threats that they carry.”

MORE: ‘I am convinced the wins will come if we stay committed to what we are trying to do’ – Hurst

Tayo Edun is available again after suspension. Photo: Steve WallerTayo Edun is available again after suspension. Photo: Steve Waller

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Paul Hurst says he is picking his summer signings on merit.

The new Blues boss has brought in nine new players so far, none of whom have any significant Championship experience, with seven of them having been handed league starts.

“I think the lads that have come in have done pretty well,” said Hurst. “If I genuinely felt that the lads that I inherited were head and shoulders above the lads that I’ve brought in then I’d hold my hands up and revert to some of the players that were already here.

MORE: Town still pursuing Tilt with Blackpool now willing to sanction move... as Hurst targets up to three signings

“I mean this with no disrespect to the lads that were here before me, but I haven’t seen that big a difference. It’s just about getting them all together as a team and trying to improve with each game that comes along.”

Fulham loaneen Tayo Edun is available again today after serving a one-game suspension. Hurst said: “He’s done well in a position (left wing) that is not his first port of call. I’m told he showed a good attitude to training on Tuesday while we were away and I have to say he is looking sharp.”

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Stat attack

2007 – Town’s last loss at Hillsborough (W4 D5)

19 – Seasons outside the top-flight for Sheff W

16 – Andre Dozzell’s age when he scored on his debut at Hillsborough in April 2016

Opposition lowdown

Manager: Jos Luhukay (Jan ‘18): W11 D9 L10

Last five finishes: 15th, 4th, 6th, 13th, 16th (all Championship)

Last home attendance: 23,416

Form: WLWDL

Last game: W 2-1 Millwall (h) – Weds

Key summer signings: None (under transfer embargo)

Key summer exits: Hunt, Wallace, Loovens, Rhodes, Venancio, Butterfield

Top-scorer: Forestieri (2)

League ever-presents: Dawson, Lees, Pelupessy, Bannan, Reach

Possible line-ups

Sheffield Wednesday (4-3-3): Dawson; Palmer, Lees, Thorniley, Penney; Preston, Pelupessy, Bannan, Forestieri, Fletcher, Reach.

Ipswich Town (4-1-4-1): Bialkowski; Donacien, Nsiala, Chambers, Knudsen; Chalobah; Edwards, Nolan, Edun, Ward; Harrison.

Ipswich Town team news

• Paul Hurst says it is ‘very doubtful’ that Cole Skuse will be involved after the midfielder limped off with an ongoing quad problem during Tuesday night’s 2-0 defeat at Derby.

• Jon Nolan is also a doubt after rolling his ankle early (and playing on) at Pride Park.

• Tayo Edun is available again after serving his one-game ban for the red card he received in last weekend’s 1-1 home draw with Aston Villa.

• Emyr Huws continued his recovery from a long-term knee injury by paying 45 minutes for the Under-23s on Monday, though Teddy Bishop missed the 8-0 win against Hull through illness.

Sheffield Weds team news

• Following a 2-0 defeat at Brentford last Sunday, boss Jos Luhukay made five changes to his team and they duly beat Millwall 2-1 at home on Wednesday night.

• The likes of Fernando Forestieri, Sam Hutchinson, Daniel Pudil, George Boyd, Atdhe Nuhiu and Lucas Joao are all options to freshen things up. Or Luhukay could keep faith with homegrown youngsters such as Matt Penney and Fraser Preston.

• Joost van Aken (ankle) has joined Gary Hooper (hip), Kieran Lee (hip) and Almen Abdi (hamstring) in the treatment room.

Opposition key man

Steven Fletcher

The 31-year-old Scottish international striker is strong in the air, holds up the ball and brings others into play. Must keep performing to keep the fit-again Lucas Joao out the side.

Referee

Jeremy Simpson (Lancashire)

Games: 4, Yellows: 11, Reds: 0

Odds

Sheffield Weds 6/4

Draw 28/13

Ipswich Town 45/17

Last meeting

Sheff Weds 1 Ipswich Town 2

Date: Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Martyn Waghorn curled in a sublime late free-kick (83) to secure Town victory.

Bartosz Bialkowski had made a super save in a scrappy goalless first half. Then Waghorn broke the deadlock from close-range (51) before Lucas Joao equalised (69) with a composed finish.

Stu’s prediction

Sheff Weds 1 Ipswich Town 1

Similar starts to the season. Look evenly-matched. Town’s wait for a win may go on.

Ipswich Town goalkeeper Bartosz Bialkowski discussed being left out of the team by former boss Paul Hurst, new coach Jimmy Walker and Paul Lambert’s positive impact when he spoke to the media this afternoon.

Paul Lambert sees Janoi Donacien as a central defender.

Paul Lambert has confirmed Jordan Graham is no longer in his plans at Ipswich Town with the winger’s loan set to be cut short in January.

Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert has told owner Marcus Evans that he believes defender Jonas Knudsen is worthy of a new contract.

Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert spoke to the media this afternoon ahead of the Friday night clash with West Bromwich Albion, and discussed the importance of the club’s fans creating a rocking Portman Road atmosphere as they try to escape the drop zone.

Mick McCarthy is the early favourite for vacant Republic of Ireland job following the departure of both Martin O’Neill and assistant Roy Keane.

In our daily feature, we take a look at what happened on this day in Ipswich Town’s history. Today we look back to David Gregory scoring a hat-trick as Town progressed to the next round of the League Cup.

Ipswich Town boss Paul Lambert is impressed with what he’s seen of the Blues’ academy during his early weeks of his reign.

Titus Bramble says Ipswich Town duo Andre Dozzell and Flynn Downes were stand-out performers at the recent England Under-20 camp.

Mark Heath, Andy Warren and Stuart Watson are back with another episode of the Kings of Anglia podcast.

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