Sheff Wed 0-3 Burton Albion - 01-Jan-2018 : Match Report
Burton Albion claimed their third successive away win with a 3-0 victory at Sheffield Wednesday as the Owls' woeful form continued.
Goals by Tom Flanagan, Lloyd Dyer and Tom Naylor earned three points for the Brewers, who also missed a penalty when Joe Wildsmith saved from Lucas Akins with the game goalless.
It means Nigel Clough remains unbeaten as a manager in nine matches as the Brewers move to the brink of safety in the Sky Bet Championship.
However, it was a miserable afternoon for the Owls who have now lost five of their last six games and have just one win in 10.
Burton could have taken a sixth-minute lead, only for Wildsmith to keep out Akins' penalty - awarded for Jacob Butterfield's challenge on Will Miller in the area.
The Brewers went ahead eight minutes before the break when Flanagan ran unchallenged through the Wednesday defence and into the area, where he unleashed a left-footed shot into the net.
There was worse to come for the hosts when Dyer ran on to Akins' through-ball and slotted past Wildsmith and into the centre of the goal five minutes after the break.
The scoring was rounded off a minute from time when Akins sent the ball across the face of goal, where it found the oncoming Naylor - who slotted home.
Burton were handed a golden chance to go ahead thanks to Butterfield's challenge on Miller and referee Darren England pointed to the spot.
Akins' spot-kick was more precision than power and Wildsmith guessed correctly to his left to keep the ball out before it was cleared.
Burton were enjoying more possession and Flanagan forced the keeper to go down to his collect his header while Akins found himself in plenty of space, running into the area before sending a low shot wide.
It took the hosts half an hour to have an attempt on goal when Lucas Joao headed over Jack Hunt's high, looping ball to the far post.
David Jones volleyed wide for the Owls from the edge of the area but it was Burton who went ahead eight minutes before the break with Flanagan claiming his second goal in four games.
The Owls should have levelled, only for Rhodes to direct his point-blank header from Adam Reach's cross straight at Burton goalkeeper Stephen Bywater.
Half-time was greeted with a chorus of boos in Hillsborough, rising to a crescendo five minutes after the break when Dyer slotted home.
John Brayford then shot across Wildsmith before Atdhe Nuhiu's introduction minutes later gave the hosts more shape and purpose, Rhodes' downward header saved by the keeper.
Bywater tipped Nuhiu's half-volley round the post and Morgan Fox headed wide but the Owls could not find the breakthrough despite dominating possession.
Instead Burton grabbed a third goal in the closing stages as Hillsborough rapidly emptied.