Sheffield Wednesday take on Preston this weekend as they look to keep themselves in the race at the top of the Sky Bet Championship.
1. At this early stage in the season, Wednesday have the joint best defence in the league – what are the Owls doing right to have forgotten about Michael Hector so quickly?
Tom Lees and Julian Börner have formed a great partnership, so far. Börner, in particular, has settled in just nicely and looks like a coup on a free transfer. Not only that, Wednesday seem to be defending from the front throughout the ninety minutes more often than not this term.
Us fans were a keen admirer of Hector, but his asking price was simply too high. Börner and Harris are both proving that you can recruit well for free if you can explore the market correctly.
2. Back to winning ways against Luton but only just, was there an element of frustration from that game performance wise?
The first half was poor, we weren’t at the races, that was frustrating. Ultimately though, the result is more important than the performance so we can move on. We were more convincing in the second half, we got the ball to wide areas and created a lot more opportunities. Wednesday did enough to get the victory and that’s all we can ask. If we can continue to keep clean sheets also then we will definitely pick up more points than not this term. Three points in the bag. On to Preston.
3. Fernando Forestieri was back in the squad for the Luton game but, with recent form in mind, is he going to have to be patient for a return to the starting line-up?
Very patient. Forestieri is out of contract at the end of the season so may feature less this campaign than we first thought. Remember, he still has his six-game ban looming over his head also. It seems that Fletcher, Murphy and Harris are all above him in the pecking order. He may have to become familiar with being an impact sub, if he’s lucky.
4. Preston away next, what are you expecting from Alex Neil’s side at this stage?
This could easily be a banana skin for the Owls. Preston can beat anybody on their day and I fully expect them to finish in the top-half this season, but, that doesn’t mean they are unbeatable. They had a great win against a poor Stoke City mid-week so they will be full of confidence. Alex Neil’s side always give 100% who work well as a team and fight to the last. I’ll be happy with anything other than a loss in this fixture.
5. Score prediction
I’m expecting a tight affair, this tie is tough to call. For that reason, I’ll sit in the fence and say 1-1.