Huddersfield Town entertain Sheffield Wednesday in a Yorkshire Derby on Saturday at 12:30 with the chase for the top two positions in full swing.
Wednesday currently sit 3 points ahead of Town in 3rd place in league one.
The Owls will be hoping for a victory and to potentially go a point clear of rivals Sheffield United who play at home against Town’s Easter Monday opponents Bournemouth.
Huddersfield will have ideas of their own as they can potentially leapfrog the Owls with three points that will see both sides on 77 points but Town’s superior goal difference (+10) would gift them 3rd place.
Vital Quotes: Simon Grayson
I think Easter will go a long way towards deciding what will happen in the rest of the season,
‘I think in terms of the game tomorrow we can’t really afford to get beaten as that would put Sheffield Wednesday six points ahead of us with five games to go.
‘Anything is still possible and tomorrow’s result won’t determine the rest of the season, but obviously it will be quite significant.
‘Regardless of being six games from the end of the season it’s still a Yorkshire derby with two big teams going head to head, but based on where we both are in the table with just six games to go it’s even bigger for everybody.
‘It’ll be a fantastic atmosphere; our fans will be in a buoyant mood after Tuesday night and will be looking to really back the team, and Wednesday have fanatical supporters too. Our players thrived on that against Charlton and I’ve touched on the fact before that when I came here as manager of Leeds and Blackpool it was just the same. I’m sure there will be another 10-15% to come from the fans at the weekend because they will want to play their part. Hopefully we’ll see a real positive atmosphere from everybody.
‘Perhaps the amount of local derbies in the League this season can be a hindrance; in these games form goes out of the window and you can drop points, when perhaps if the team was located 100 miles away there isn’t that same intensity. It’s certainly a great spectacle for the supporters though.’
Grayson wasnt the manager when the sides last met but what does he predict this time around?
‘I remember seeing how the scoring went; going 2-0 up, then 4-2 down to get back to 4-4. That probably epitomises our season really; we have been in good positions to win games only to lose or draw them.
‘I like to think we’re a bit of a different team to when we played Sheffield Wednesday earlier this season, but equally they will be different too in terms of how they play with Dave (Jones) going in there. They have powerful and strong personnel.
‘Hopefully from a manager’s point of view it isn’t as entertaining a game – I would happily take a 1-0 or 2-0 home win!’
Huddersfield Town Team News:
Oscar Gobern & Damien Johnson (hamstring) miss out.
Gary Naysmith is still sidelined with a knee injury.
Lee Novak picked up a knock against Orient but is expected to be fit to play.
Player to watch: Jordan Rhodes
Fresh off a hat-trick on Tuesday night, Rhodes faces the team that he scored four against back in December.
Remember his dad is the ‘keeper coach at Wednesday!
Sheffield Wednesday Team News:
Captain Rob Jones sits out through suspension.
Danny Batth is expected to step up to fill the vacant place.
The Owls have no other injury concerns for this crunch Yorkshire Derby.
Player to watch: Gary Madine
Goal Machine as he is called by Wednesday supporters, not in the class of Rhodes but still a danger to the Town defence.
Match Facts & Stats
ALL TIME LEAGUE RECORD.
The sides have met 41 times in the league over the years with Huddersfield having the advantage with 20 victories tot heir name compared to Wednesday’s 12 – the teams have shared 9 draws including the epic encounter earlier this season.
Npower League One, 17 December 2011.
Sheffield Wednesday 4-4 Huddersfield Town
Sheffield Wednesday: Bywater, Tavernier, Batth, R Jones, R Johnson, Lines, Semedo, Prutton, O’Grady, Watt (Lowe , 46), Marshall (Bennett, 89)
Scorers: R Jones 26, R Johnson 28 Marshall 63, O’Grady 74
Huddersfield Town: Bennett, Bruce, Naysmith, Hunt, Clarke, Miller, Roberts, Gobern, Ward (McDermott, 71), Rhodes, Novak (Parkin, 82)
Scorers: Jordan Rhodes 12, 16, 77 & 90
Huddersfield Town 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday.
Next Fixtures: Huddersfield Town
Mon 9th (A) Bournemouth
Sat 14th (A) Preston
Sat 21st (H) Scunthorpe
Sat 28th (A) Walsall
Sat 5th (H) Yeovil Town