Sheffield Wednesday 0-2 Town: Match Report

Huddersfield Town story posted by Sean Makin on 03/11/2010
Huddersfield Town produced a magnificent display to see of fellow promotion-chasers Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough on a wet and windy Tuesday night. With Joey Gudjonsson was running the show, the Terriers ran out 2-0 winners with two cracking goals from Graham Carey and the in-form Anthony Pilkington.Sheffield Wednesday 0-2 Town: Match Report

For Sheffield Wednesday fans, there are problems on and off the pitch with a woeful performance against Town with no wins their last three and one win in their last seven at Hillsborough.

Town boss Lee Clark made one change to the starting XI that beat Walsall on Saturday. Alan Lee is suspended for three matches for elbowing a Saddlers defender which meant Joe Garner was Jordan Rhodes' partner spearheading the Town attack. On-loan Arsenal striker and England U-19 international Benik Afobe was the bench after only meeting his new team mates the previous day.
For the Owls, captain Darren Purse was back in the starting XI after suspension which meant Tommy Spurr dropped to the bench. Jermaine Johnson started for the first time this season after injury, Chris Sedgwick was recalled as Tommy Miller was out injured.

Some supporters missed the start of the match due to traffic congestion on Penistone Road and flash flooding.

Town started well right from the off and seemed first to every ball. Gudjonsson and Damien Johnson pulling the strings and winning the battle in the centre of the park with Rhodes and Garner being lively up front.

Wednesday could have taken an early lead with Johnson cut inside but his long-range effort deflected off Peter Clarke. Rhodes was unlucky to add to his season goal tally with a smart build up starting with Gudjonsson, Garner laid off the ball but Rhodes fierce shot smacked the post and away to safety. Weaver in the Wednesday goal would have been beaten.

The Owls were slow and sluggish, seeming unable to string passes together and Town took the lead on 23 minutes.
Purse was booked for a challenge on Rhodes around 25 yards from goal and the on-loan Celtic winger Graham Carey took the free-kick. The Irishman beautifully curled the ball over the wall and into the top corner of the net giving Weaver no chance in the Wednesday goal.

The Owls had successive corners but failed to capitalize on any with poor delivery from Darren Potter which got the home fans rattled voicing their frustration.

Purse wasted a free header on goal but the Owls were punished on the counter as Town doubled their lead. Gudjonsson again at the heart of it and when it seemed the momentum was lost Rhodes laid off the ball to Pilkington on the edge of the area and the winger lashed home a superb curling shot that found the bottom corner for his seventh goal in six games. Pilkington has now matched Pawel Abbott's record of scoring in successive matches.

The jeers got louder from the home fans when the second goal went in but it could have been dead and buried for the Owls had Town converted their chances.

Garner threw himself at a Rhodes cross but failed to connect and then Rhodes himself burst into the area but flashed a shot just wide from the right side of the goal.

Johnson was really the main threat for the home side and Wednesday boss Alan Irvine made two changes at the break. James O'Connor and Clinton Morrison replaced the ineffective Darren Potter and Marcus Tudgay.

The chances helped the Owls get a foothold in the game and had a decent 15 minutes spell of possession. For the first time Ian Bennett in the Town goal was tested, tipped a long-range effort from O'Conner wide. Antony Kay made an important block when the ball bobbled around the Town box, Beevers shot looked to be heading on target but the former Barnsley man flung himself in front of the ball.

Kay breathed a sigh of relief two minutes later when just managed to turn Johnson's cross wide of his own goal.

It was a slight improvement for the Owls compared to their first half performance but Town never looked in danger but Neil Mellor was unlucky after firing a shot just over the bar after a good one-two with Morrison on the edge of the Town box. Morrison should have been booked minutes earlier after a Michael Kuipers-style rant at the referee for a foul on a Town defender.

Clark through on Afobe with 25 minutes to go in place of Garner and the on-loan Arsenal youngster showed some good touches and linked up well with his new team mates. Holding up the ball well and showing a good turn of pace that left the Owls defence flat-footed. Afobe nearly scored after bursting into the area with Weaver managed to the block the shot.

Liam Ridehalgh had his best game in a Town shirt and did well against the tricky Johnson. The Jamaican limped off late in the second half and the Owls were down to 10 men as they'd used all three subs. Town took control against the 10 men and just ran down the clock and as the full time whistle blew the Town fans cheered in delighted but the Wednesday players were booed off by their home support.

A solid display by Town and for me it is up their with Notts County as one of the best performances of the season. If Town can keep picking up points away from home then automatic promotion is a real possibility.

Sean's Star Man - Joey Gudjonsson
Pulled the strings in the first half and bossed the midfield. The Owls were unable to cope. Although the Icelandic went quiet for the first 20 minutes in the second half as Wednesday put on the pressure he soon got back into his stride. Too good for this division.


Sheff Wed: Weaver, Buxton, Purse, Beevers, Jones, Johnson, Potter (O'Connor 45), Coke, Sedgwick (Teale 75), Tudgay (Morrison 45), Mellor.
Unused subs: Jameson, Spurr, Hinds, Heffernan.

Town: Bennett, Peltier, Kay, P Clarke, Ridehalgh, Pilkington, Johnson, Gudjonsson, Carey (Arfield 71), Garner (Afobe 64), Rhodes.
Subs unused: Colgan, N Clarke, McCombe, Croft, Atkinson.

Referee: P Crossley (Kent)
Attendance: 20,540

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