Owls on the brink as Boro make them pay for mistakes

Last updated : 24 April 2021 By C. Morris

Poor play at both ends of the pitch sees Wednesday edge closer to relegation

Sheffield Wednesday are now very much on the brink of relegation to League One following a 3-1 defeat at Middlesbrough. Indeed, the only reason the Owls weren’t relegated today was thanks to results elsewhere rather than their own ability to get themselves out of trouble. Derby County suffered a late defeat at home to Birmingham City meaning they remain 4 points ahead of the Owls with 2 games to play while Rotherham United, who still have 4 games remaining, lost 1-0 to promotion chasing Barnsley.

Darren Moore made two changes to the side that beat Blackburn in midweek, Paterson and Green coming in for Rhodes and Harris.

Bannan tested Archer from distance early on as the game got off to a fairly even start but on 20 minutes a costly error by Borner gifted the home side a chance to take the lead which they duly accepted. The German cente-back had 10 yards of space in which to control a cross-field pass but his loose touch allowed Bolasie to nip in and advance into the penalty area, beating Westwood with an angled drive into the top corner via a slight deflection off Lees.

Just before the half-hour mark the defender had the chance to make amends but ballooned a shot high over the bar when well-placed following a set piece. On 39 minutes however, the visitors did find an equalizer. Andree Green made a good run into the penalty area before drawing a fould and Josh Windass made no mistake from the spot, driving home the penalty low into the bottom corner of the goal.

Shortly before the break the Owls suffered a blow when Tom Lees went to the ground awkwardly and had to be substituted following a lengthy stoppage, replaced by Osaze Urhoghide.

Within 5 minutes of the restart Windass missed a great chance to give Wednesday the lead when he shot wide with the goal at his mercy following a pass from Green and the miss proved to be costly.

Another poor error from Borner on 73 minutes gifted Middlesbrough a corner and substitute Coburn was able to fend off Urhoghide to score with a header in off the foot of the far post. With 10 minutes to go it was 3-1 as Bolasie rose above Palmer at the back post to nod down for Watmore to poke home from close range.

There was still time for Saville to force a save from Westwood, getting on the end of another set piece with Wednesday’s marking all at sea. Harris saw a late chance blocked but yet again Wednesday failed to pick up any points from falling behind and must now rely on others to keep their faint hopes of survival alive.

If Derby win at Swansea City next Saturday it won’t matter what the Owls do in their final home game of the season against Nottingham Forest next weekend.