Steve Agnew on why '˜determination and spirit' was key in Sheffield Wednesday's FA Cup win over Luton Town

Sheffield Wednesday caretaker manager Steve Agnew praised his squad's 'spirit and togetherness' after the Owls saw off a resilient Luton Town at Kenilworth Road to book a date with Chelsea in the fourth round.

Tuesday, 15th January 2019, 9:55 pm
Updated Thursday, 17th January 2019, 4:33 am
Owls caretaker pair of Steve Agnew and Stephen Clemence. Pic Steve Ellis

Wednesday, who came into the replay on the back of a 3-0 defeat to Hull at the weekend, started well but came into their own in the second half when Atdhe Nuhiu poked home from close range.

Despite threats of a Luton equaliser late in the game, Agnew's men saw out the game to secure a trip to Stamford Bridge in two weeks' time.

Owls caretaker pair of Steve Agnew and Stephen Clemence. Pic Steve Ellis

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The Owls came out of the blocks quickly and pressed the Hatters hard for the duration of the game, something that Agnew said the team had worked on this week in training.

He told the Star: 'We felt we were a little bit deep in games and we wanted to apply pressure on a Luton team that play out from the back.

'I can't remember one occasion where they comfortably cam out with the ball so we played high, we put two strikers up.'

And Steve Bruce's deputy believes the win, his first as interim Owls chief, will carry the team forward into Saturday's Championship match against Wigan at Hillsborough.

'Wins breed confidence and I have just left a happy dressing room there. We will recover and prepare for Wigan on Saturday. 

'Obviously there were little pockets of play where the combination play was good up to Fletcher, Bannan, Reach, Boyd and Hector.

'It was the determination and the spirit and the togetherness of the group that managed to get the team over the line tonight. '

Luton heaped pressure on Wednesday's defensive unit late in the second half in front of a capacity crowd at their home ground, and forced two fine saves from the returning Cameron Dawson as well as hitting the post.

Agnew will be tasked with masterminding a way past Chelsea in the next stage of the cup, with the fourth round tie due to be played before Bruce's arrival at Wednesday.

He said: 'Steve's not with us but I was on the phone with him and he's an experienced manager and an experienced player who has played in cup finals and he knows the difficulty of Luton Town away from home. 

'He'll be pleased with the result and it's pleasing for us to progress in the FA Cup and look ahead to the weekend.'