Owls FT: Derby County 3 Sheffield Wednesday 0

Michail Antonio and Craig Forsyth
Michail Antonio and Craig Forsyth
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Sheffield Wednesday were second best against Derby County.

Wednesday fans normally observe a minute’s silence without a hitch - but today’s to mark Remembrance weekend did not quite go according to plan.

Seyi Olofinjana

Seyi Olofinjana

The away following of around 4,000 inside the ground did fall silent after the referee’s whistle.

But singing - seemingly from Owls fans - could be heard coming from just outside the ground.

A few inside, perhaps not realising the source of the noise, then began to shout for quiet, and that too disrupted the atmosphere.

After the whistle sounded again to begin normal proceedings, there was booing from some home supporters, directed at their rivals.

The Green 'Un Online: Owls latest news.

The Green 'Un Online: Owls latest news.

Wednesday fans then certainly got behind their fans - and dished out some stick to former United forward Ward, especially after a little confrontation with Roger Johnson on the touchline.

An unnecessary foul on Ward by Reda Johnson gave away a 32-yard free kick from Bryson which was deflected and flew past a post with Kirkland totally wrong-footed.

That left-off was followed by Roger Johnson making a great block to turn a Dawkins shot over the bar; centre forward Martin touching a near-post cross from left back Forsyth just wide, under pressure, and Dawkins dragging a chance wide from 10 yards.

Wednesday had expected Derby to come at them and they were battlling to try to keep the Rams at bay.

But the Owls made an opportunity from their first real attack, in the 25th minute: McPhail and Fryatt worked the ball out to Antonio, he crossed and Olofinjana was running in but sent his header over the bar.

Wednesday were tending to get outnumbered in midfield, and Derby were enjoying the most possession, preventing the Owls from getting anything together going forward or providing service to Wickham and Fryatt, while Antonio and Helan too had hardly been in the game as attacking threats.

Bookings for McPhail and Roger and Reda Johnson were some reflection of how the Owls were having to scrap it out.

They escaped again when Buxton powered a header narrowly off target from a Ward free kick, but were not so lucky in the last minute of normal time in this half: a left-side corner by Ward was bulleted home off the underside of the bar by the head of centre back BUXTON, who was under no real challenge but the timing and execution of the set-piece were perfect, and Derby deserved their lead.

Derby switched the pressure back on straight after half-time.

The second goal was going to be important, whoever got it - and it was no real surprise when it was plundered by the Rams.

They opened Wednesday up with a lovely move down the left and when the ball was slid across goal HUGHES, named in the England Under 21 squad this week, came in unmarked at the far post to slot home from close range, in the 49th minute.

The home team had dominated the contest.

Dave Jones took off Helan and McPhail in the 53rd minute and sent on Jermaine Johnson, to the right flank with Antonio switching to the left, and Coke to midfield.

Two minutes after that came a real chance: JJ played a low ball across the box and from 12 yards Antonio scooped his shot high over the bar.

Another three minutes on the clock and it was 3-0. This time it was the Owls left flank that was undone, another low ball was played to the far side and MARTIN was on his own as he tapped the ball into the net.

Wednesday did show spirit in trying to battle back and earn some reward, JJ lashed a shot just over the top.

No doubt realising that this was going to be a point-less afternoon, the Wednesday fans did the only thing they could do - they kept signing and chanting.

It could have been 4-0 when Dawkins sidefooted a chance wide after the ball to him in the box, and when Ward seemed to have a free header but missed the cross completely. A full-stretch save from Kirkland was the next thing to keep the Owls level, and Derby had resumed their earlier dominance. Palmer took over from Olofinjana in midfield in the 77th minute.

Wednesday had not posed much of an attacking threat all afternoon.