Sheffield Wednesday: Owls set to face ‘wounded’ Bluebirds

Stuart Gray and new signing Filipe Melo

Stuart Gray and new signing Filipe Melo

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Sheffield Wednesday boss Stuart Gray would love nothing more than to inflict more pain on Cardiff City come 5pm tomorrow night.

The pressure is mounting on Bluebirds chief Russell Slade following a run of just two wins from their last 11 matches in all competitions.

The Welsh club have lost four on the trot and Slade, who was only appointed last October, will be looking to lead them to their first away victory since November when they take on Owls.

“Cardiff will be wounded,” Gray, who was relieved to keep his squad intact on transfer deadline-day, told The Star. “Russell [Slade] has inherited a group of players and he’s probably stamping his own mark on the club, getting in the type of players he wants to get in. They have got a few new faces in Lee Peltier, Scott Malone, Alex Revell and Eoin Doyle.

“We have already faced Alex Revell once this season. He’s a big, strong boy who backs into people. He’s very good in the air.”

At the start of the season, many pundits tipped Cardiff to be competing for one of the three promotion places. But that top-six push has failed to materialise and the club are currently languishing 13th in the standings.

Gray, who has challenged striker Gary Madine to fight for a starting role by impressing him in training. insisted: “It shows the honesty of the league. Blackpool beat Brighton last week and who would have thought Brighton or Wigan would be down near the bottom?

“If you don’t get the right balance of soldiers and artists and get people who are willing to roll their sleeves up and are a 100 per cent committed for the cause, you will not get the results you want.”