Impressive Bees halt Wednesday's march
Sheffield Wednesday missed out on the chance to cement their Sky Bet Championship play-off position as they suffered a 2-1 home defeat to Brentford.
A fifth win in a row for the Owls would have sent them up to fourth and 10 points clear of seventh-placed Norwich, but they were undone by first-half headers from John Egan and Harlee Dean at Hillsborough.
It was a first home loss in eight, going back to November, despite a late curler from Fernando Forestieri, but they are still in a strong position in the top-six race going into a vital Yorkshire derby with Leeds on Saturday.
For Brentford it was an impressive three points, built on a slick first-half display, and just their second win in seven games.
Wednesday, despite their impressive recent results, have been criticised for the level of their performances and this was another lifeless start as Brentford dictated the early play with intricate passing and pace on the break.
Wednesday enjoyed their best spell of pressure just after the half-hour and they were convinced they should have had a penalty when Forestieri went down under a challenge from Dean, but referee Darren Bond waved away protests.
And the Owls were still seething three minutes later when Brentford took a deserved lead as Egan was left unmarked to send a looping header over Keiren Westwood.
The Owls goalkeeper thought he had kept his side's deficit at one nine minutes later when he turned away Jota's low shot with his feet, but from a corner soon after, which the hosts contested, the Bees did double their lead when Dean was given the freedom of the area to head home.
Dean produced some more heroics at the other end to deny Wednesday a route back into the match before half-time with a superb block from Jordan Rhodes' effort eight yards out.
The hosts offered plenty of bluster after the restart, but did not trouble Daniel Bentley in the Brentford goal and it was Dean Smith's men that almost found a third, but Westwood did well to get down to Jota's deflected free-kick.
Wednesday's onslaught came in the final 15 minutes and Bentley produced two wonderful saves to deny Forestieri
First he did brilliantly to get across goal and palm away a low effort after Sam Winnall's shot was blocked and then he acrobatically tipped a 20-yard free-kick over the crossbar.
Still the search went on and Tom Field did well to clear a Rhodes header off the line, with Steven Fletcher somehow heading on to a post from a yard out, while Bentley kept out Ross Wallace and Winnall efforts.
Wednesday finally made the breakthrough when Forestieri curled beautifully into the top corner from the angle of the box in stoppage time, but it was not enough to stop their winning run came to an end.
Source : PA