Preston North End vs Sheffield Wednesday
England – The Championship
Date: Saturday, 5th August 2017
Kick off at 15:00 UK/16:00 CET
The opening round of The Championship offers us interesting encounter. At Deepdale local Preston North End takes on Sheffield Wednesday.
Preston North End
Preston are currently going through some turbulence. They lost Simon Grayson who promoted them from League 1 and helped them settle into the higher tier. Despite lacking some resources and a bit of quality the team finished in the top half last season. Still Preston had an atrocious finish of last season and new manager Alex Neil will have to pick his players morale up and continue into the footsteps of his predecessor.
The good news are that Preston kept their squad from last season. There was very little activity in the transfer window with keeper Declan Rudd joining the ranks along with Josh Harrop from Manchester United. Two players came from Irish side Cork City. The first is striker Sean Maguire and the second is defender Kevin O’Connor. With their help Alex Neil is hoping to stabilize the team from the end season losses.
Players, staff and especially fans of Sheffield Wednesday are probably extremely frustrated after losing in the play-offs second year in a row. The last game of the season was probably very painful for any Wednesday fan. The team was playing the return fixture on Hillsborough after a goalless draw in the first game against Huddersfield. After a 0-0 first half the Owls managed to get the lead just to receive an equalizer later on. The game came down to penalties and the defeat which followed in them have hurt the home fans badly.
The players and manager Carlos Carvalhal will be eager to put the past behind them. The squad is relatively the same as last year except for one outstanding addition. Striker Jordan Rhodes joined from Middlesbrough which is one of the major transfer in the whole Championship. Wednesday had stable defensive performances almost all season and with a quality addition up front they are main contenders for top 6 finish again.
Preston North End vs Sheffield Wednesday: Head to head
Preston have just 2 wins in the last 10 games against Wednesday. The Owls have 4 and we have 4 draws 3 of which ended 1-1.
At Deepdale Preston have 1 victory, 1 defeat and 3 draws. Also interesting stat to note here is that 7 of the last 8 games on Deepdale between the sides finished with under 2.5 goals.
Preston North End vs Sheffield Wednesday: Prediction
Both teams will be cautious in the opening game. Preston are going through change of manager and they will want to avoid losing the game. Sheffield were not amongst the highest scoring teams last season especially away from Hillsborough. A tactical game without many chances looks most likely.
Wednesday will be hoping for a positive start. They are well organized and sturdy team and with the addition of Jordan Rhodes are the team most likely to make something happen. Backing them to get the points may prove to have value.