Sheffield Wednesday: Owls chief hopeful over Hutchinson

Owls midfielder Sam Hutchinson
Owls midfielder Sam Hutchinson

Boss Stuart Gray is optimistic Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Sam Hutchinson will be passed fit for their clash with Championship leaders Nottingham Forest this weekend.

Hutchinson, who enjoyed a brief loan spell at Forest during the 2012/13 campaign, has sat out the last two fixtures due to a back problem.

But Owls head coach Gray hopes the 25-year-old will join in with first-team training tomorrow ahead of Saturday’s lunch-time clash at Hillsborough, kick-off 12.15pm.

He said: “Sam is feeling a lot better. Fingers crossed he will be available for selection on Saturday.

“He has not missed the games through his knee injuries or any problems he’s had in the past. It’s been a back problem that has affected him.

“Sam is a good player and has done well but the people who have come in have performed well. We’ve won two games without him so we not a one man team.”

Kieran Lee (groin) is ruled out while Lewis Buxton could be included in the match-day squad. Speaking to the press corps today, Gray confirmed Buxton would have started the Burnley match in midweek but Wednesday pulled him out of the tie at the last minute because his hamstring felt tight.

The Owls’ reward for overcoming Burnley is a trip to Premier League heavyweights Manchester City in the third round of the Capital One Cup.

Gray, who has rubbished reports linking them with Manchester United full-back Marnick Vermijl and Sunderland striker Danny Graham, said: “I would have liked a home game like any manager does in cup competitions but if you are drawn away, it doesn’t get much better than a trip to Manchester City.

“It will be a great test for the players against the current Premier League champions and cup holders.

“I’m sure the team that they will put out against us will be 11 full internationals.

“It will be great for the players to pit their wits against the top players but we will worry about that closer to the time. Our bread and butter is the Championship.”