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Sheffield Wednesday hoping to draw on advantage in Sunderland clash

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Sheffield Wednesday are hoping to draw on the added experience in the Owls squad in their League One play-off semi-final against Sunderland, according to defender Liam Palmer.

The two sides meet for the first leg at the Stadium of Light this evening, with the return fixture played at Hillsborough on Monday.

Wednesday finished the League One season one point and one place above the Black Cat, highlighting just how tight the tie between two of the division’s two heavyweights could be.

Both clubs will be looking for any sort of advantage and the Owls’ added experience appears to be something they’re keen to make the most of.

The average age of Wednesday’s starting XIs in League One this term has been 27.9 (the second highest in the division) while Sunderland’s has been 24.7 (the sixth lowest in the division).

Speaking to the Yorkshire Post, Palmer discussed the links to the promotion-winning Owls team he was part of in 2011/12 and hinted that they would look to make the most of their advantage.

He said: “I think that the formula that season was a mix of youth and experience and there were some characters who you looked at and they just knew how to get the job done and what it took.

“As a young player, you looked up to them and it really filled you with confidence.

“Looking at the squad now, there’s probably even more experience, especially with the last few starting sides; touching their late 20s and early 30s.

“Hopefully, we can draw on that at certain times in the games and the occasion as a whole and that can bode well for us.”

The Verdict

Wycombe used all their wile and experience to come away with a 2-0 win against MK Dons in the first leg of the other League One play-off semi-final yesterday and Wednesday will be hoping to do the same against what is a relatively youthful Black Cats team.

Players like Palmer, Barry Bannan, Sam Hutchinson, and Lee Gregory have seen so much in EFL terms and that will certainly be an advantage, particularly in the big moments.

Sunderland do have a few experienced heads of their own, though, and some real quality in their ranks so Wednesday can expect a really tough contest.

It’s set to be a phenomenal tie between two clubs desperate to get back to the Championship.

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London-based sports journalist at Snack Media EFL accredited, graduate of New Associates and the University of Brighton

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Sheffield Wednesday hoping to draw on advantage in Sunderland clash

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