WEDNESDAY could be caught by MK Dons tonight if they slip up at Scunthorpe - but Gary Megson and Danny Batth look upon the Glanford Park encounter as an opportunity rather than a banana skin.
If the Owls win this, their game in hand, they will go level on points with second-placed Huddersfield and third-placed Sheffield United.
MK Dons face Stevenage away tonight and are fifth, three points behind Wednesday but with a superior goal difference.
Megson feels that the need to win goes hand in hand with playing for Wednesday and is something with which any team who want to challenge for promotion must cope.
“We can get ourselves into joint second spot if we can turn Scunthorpe over; MK Dons could do exactly the same if they win at Stevenage. It’s very tight,” said the Owls boss.
“We were every bit as good as Charlton; it was just the free-kick that did us.
“We had 18 shots to Hartlepool’s six on Saturday, though it didn’t quite work out for us at the end.
“We can either feel sorry for ourselves or do what we have always done: roll our sleeves up.
“Scunthorpe will look upon us as a scalp, like one or two others have done. We have to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
“I look on on it as a chance to get another real positive: if we win, we’ll be joint second, in the fourth round of the FA Cup, with another big game against MK Dons next Tuesday. If we put in a right good shift and get a good result at Scunthorpe, it kick-starts us.
“If you’re right up there, you’re never involved in anything but big games.”
Batth will be playing at Scunthorpe’s compact Glanford Park ground for the first time.
He said: “Playing on a tight pitch is nothing new to the squad. We’ll look to deal with that in the right way.
“Charlton have done well but there’s no reason why any team can’t be caught.
“I don’t see anything that scares us. There’s no reason why we can’t keep going and finish in the autmomatic promotion places.
“We played Scunthorpe at our place and beat them. It was a good game. I think they’re all good games at this stage.”
Teams and ref
IRON (possible): Slocombe; Ribeiro, Canavan, Reid, Nolan; Walker, Togwell, O’Connor; Thompson, Robertson, Barcham (4-3-3).
OWLS (possible): Weaver; Otsemobor, Batth, Llera, Buxton; M Jones, Lines, Semedo, J Johnson; O’Grady, Madine (4-4-2).
Tony Bates (Stoke): Handled the Owls’ Johnstone’s Paint Trophy tie at Bradford, where a makeshift side lost on penalties after a 0-0 draw.
Wednesday’s only win at Scunthorpe was in the first ever meeting between the clubs, 4-1 on September 27, 1958, in the old Second Division.