Sheffield Wednesday: Excited Loovens can't wait to lead final Owls charge

Skipper Glenn Loovens, left, and Carlos CarvalhalSkipper Glenn Loovens, left, and Carlos Carvalhal
Skipper Glenn Loovens, left, and Carlos Carvalhal
Skipper Glenn Loovens is ready to spearhead a Sheffield Wednesday victory charge in the biggest match of his career.

The Owls head to Wembley a week on Saturday to compete in the Championship Play-Off Final knowing they stand one win away from returning to the Premier League for the first time since 2000.

Loovens said: “It means a lot to get to Wembley with Sheffield Wednesday. There are games you watch as a kid and realise you want to do the same, to walk your team out before a final at Wembley.

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“It will be a great honour and I am sure I will do it justice. This game will probably be the biggest of my career. Definitely up there.

“There will be so much at stake, not just for me but everyone at the club and in the city. We want to enjoy getting there for a couple of days but then it is back to work.

“We will make sure we are ready for the Final.”

Centre-back Loovens starred in Wednesday’s dogged draw at Brighton and Hove Albion on Monday. Trailing 2-0 after the first leg, Lewis Dunk opened the scoring for the Seagulls before Ross Wallace, against the run of play, claimed his second goal in as many matches to ensure Carlos Carvalhal’s side will be involved in the promotion decider.

Loovens said: “We have worked hard all season. It wasn’t the best of games on our part, especially the first half. Brighton were all over us but we stuck together as a team.

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“We had to grind things out and the goal before half-time was a bonus. That was a big moment. I felt the second half was better, we had more control.

“It was defence against attack in that first half. If I am honest, I have never been as tired as I was in that first half in my whole career.

“It shows you what football is all about. We were the better team at Hillsborough and they were the better team in the first half at Brighton.

“But, in the end, we got through and that was always the aim. We are in the Final and I am glad we did it.

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“The way the game went, that maybe makes it more of a relief to get to Wembley. On another day, it could have gone different. We have to be honest about that.

“But I also believe that over the two legs we deserved it. We could have scored a couple more in that first game.”

Winger Wallace, chasing a third promotion out of the second-tier, added: “I’m just glad we got the job done for the club.

“We’re going to have a magnificent day at Wembley and we’ll give it everything we’ve got.

“We’re just concentrating on ourselves and we’ll enjoy this moment and over the next 11-12 days, we’ll get ourselves ready.”