Bartosz Bialkowski looks ahead to Town's crucial match against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough
Bartosz Bialkowski insists all the pressure is on the hosts as Town visit Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, but knows the result will be massive in order to maintain the Play-Off push.
The ‘keeper, who picked up the Supporters Player of the Year award last weekend, concedes that it is crunch time if Town are to make the Play-Offs, but hopes to exploit any complacency that may have crept into the Owls’ game.
“It’s a massive game for us and simply, we need to beat them,” he told Ipswich Player HD.
“We’ll see where we are after the game but we’re going into it with the mentality of winning the game.
“We are eight points off the Play-Offs so we just need to do everything we can to close the gap. Obviously the pressure is on them, and they might think that they’re in there already so we’ll see.
“Training has been really good this week and obviously we were frustrated and disappointed after the game, but that’s football, it happens.
“We couldn’t get going, but that is gone now and we’re looking forward to Saturday.”
Daryl Murphy will remain sidelined for the trip to Hillsborough with a calf injury he sustained whilst on international duty with Ireland last month, although Mick McCarthy is hopeful he will return for Tuesday’s visit of Fulham. Youngster, Andre Dozzell will travel as he looks to make his first-team debut for the Blues, although Teddy Bishop will miss out and will instead play 90 minutes for the U21s on Monday in a bid to boost his fitness. Larsen Toure [groin] and Luke Varney [hamstring] are doubtful after pulling up in training, but Giles Coke [knee] and Ryan Fraser [hamstring] remain out.
Carlos Carvalhal hopes to welcome back the trio of goalkeeper, Keiren Westwood, defender, Glenn Loovens and striker Gary Hooper for the visit of Town after all three missed the 4-1 defeat at Bristol City last weekend through illness and injury. The Owls boss made six changes to his side prior to that defeat, and he is likely to do so again on Saturday.
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Where They Stand
Town – 8th
Sheffield Wednesday – 6th
Last Time they met
Town got over their opening day disappointment at Brentford with a 2-1 victory over the Owls in August. Ross Wallace put Wednesday in front before Freddie Sears fired in an equaliser just two minutes later which a powerful finish from an acute angle. Tommy Smith put Town into the lead, a goal which would turn out to be the winner, just eight minutes after the restart as he headed home a Ryan Fraser cross, as Town sealed their first league win of the season and moved into the top-six doing so.
The Dane has come on leaps and bounds as the season has progressed and has established himself as Mick McCarthy’s first choice left-back. One thing that has been missing from his game so far, however, is his first goal for the club, but he has spoken of his belief that he will grab one before the season is out so could Saturday be the day?
The former Italy U21 international has been in scintillating form for the Owls this season, scoring 14 goals, and setting up a further seven so far. His tally makes him the highest scorer in the Wednesday side and he also has the second-most assists, with only Ross Wallace (eight) ahead of him in that regard. He has, however, also been sent-off twice this season and picked up seven yellow cards, so the feisty Italian will be the danger man for the hosts on Saturday.
Sky Bet Odds
Sheff Wed: 5/6
Referee: Robert Madley
Assistant Referees: Constantine Hatzidakis & Peter Kirkup
Fourth Official: Eddie Ilderton
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