Owls desperately need to sharpen up in attack

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DAVE JONES cut a frustrated figure on the touchline at Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday.

Delighted with how his Sheffield Wednesday side were playing after a shaky start to the game that had allowed the hosts to go ahead, the 56-year-old was, nevertheless, irritated by an inability to capitalise on their dominance.

On several occasions, he could be seen turning away with an expression of angst as a header flashed wide or the final pass went awry just when Rovers looked there for the taking.

Today, the Owls will look to make amends as they take on Ipswich Town in the first of back-to-back games against the other teams occupying a place in the relegation zone.

It will not, though, be easy with the Tractor Boys being determined to put their own troubling week behind them after manager Paul Jewell departed as the Suffolk side crashed to the foot of the Championship.

Chris Hutchings, who took permanent charge of both Bradford City and Wigan Athletic in the wake of his friend Jewell leaving, has been named caretaker manager and he is promising to ruffle the Owls’ feathers.

He said: “Sheffield Wednesday are a big side, and they are going to be a threat from set-pieces.

“In the second half, Blackburn dropped deeper and deeper but soaked up the pressure and got the win.

“But Sheffield Wednesday are fighting for their lives at the bottom of the league. So are we and that means there could be a few feathers flying.”

Captain Carlos Edwards said: “It’s sad to see Paul leave because he’s a nice guy but unfortunately things haven’t quite worked out for us.”

Jones is hoping Anthony Gardner and Jay Bothroyd, both so impressive in the 1-1 derby draw with Leeds United eight days ago, are fit after missing the trip to Blackburn through injury as the Owls look to prevent their run without a league win from extending into double figures.

Ipswich are in a similarly wretched run of form and have just one win all season – a 2-1 triumph over Watford on August 21.

Wednesday manager Jones said: “Jay was ill on Friday (ahead of the Leeds draw) but he has also had a swollen ankle.

“We tried to get him up and running on Tuesday (ahead of the following night’s trip to Blackburn) but it was still too swollen.

“We think we might have him for Ipswich. Anthony is the same. He’s had a swollen knee. It was unfortunate for them both to miss Blackburn but we’ll see how they are before Ipswich.”

Ipswich striker Paul Taylor (foot) remains a long-term absentee while full-back Elliott Hewitt is set to be ruled out with tonsillitis.