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Wednesday 21 March 2018

Fans' support can lift Sheffield Wednesday to Premier League - Glenn Loovens

Glenn Loovens has praised Sheffield Wednesday's Wembley-bound fans
Glenn Loovens has praised Sheffield Wednesday's Wembley-bound fans

Club captain Glenn Loovens feels Sheffield Wednesday's fans can be the 12th man on Saturday when they face Hull in the Championship play-off final.

The Owls sold their allocation of just under 39,000 tickets in less than five days for the Wembley match and the two-time Holland international is confident that following can make a huge difference.

"They have been helping us all season, home and away, and especially the last couple of games we played, Cardiff at home and Brighton home and away," Loovens said. "The atmosphere has been amazing and I expect they are going to step it up a notch on Saturday.

"It would be massive for everyone, not only for the players but everyone involved who works hard behind the scenes and the fans as well, who have been longing for it for a long time."

The central defender has tasted defeat under the arch of Wembley when he played for Cardiff against Portsmouth in the 2008 FA Cup final and is hoping for a better result this time around.

"Preferably yes. We don't go there to lose. It will be a tough game and whoever turns up on the day will probably take it, and we have to make sure it's us," Loovens added.

"Hull have a very experienced team. We expect they will turn up on the day. It won't be an easy game so we have to make sure we deserve to win the game with our style of football and make sure we are on top.

"But if we just play our football and work hard for each other, like we have done all season, and if we play as we are capable of playing and perform on the day, hopefully it will be enough to seal the win."

The 32-year-old understands just how much it means to the Wednesday fans as they head into a game which could be worth an estimated £170million to the club should they secure promotion.

Manager Carlos Carvalhal has added to the feel-good factor by signing a new three-year contract and Loovens claims even some of Wednesday's closest rivals have become caught up in the buzz around the city.

"We have come a long way. When I came we were fighting relegation and in two and a half years we are pushing to go up," Loovens said.

"There's been a lot of changes in those years and I think everyone deserves the opportunity to be where we are now and we have to make sure we don't turn it down.

"More people are approaching you, wishing you all the best. I've even had a few Sheffield United fans coming up saying they support United but wishing Wednesday all the best."

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