Goals from George Byers and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing secured the victory at Hillsborough as a Darren Moore-less Wednesday made it three wins in a row on home soil and went within four points of the Play-Off places in League One with a dominant performance.
But it wasn’t all good news – with Harlee Dean, Fisayo Dele-Bashiru and Josh Windass all sustaining injuries that saw them limp off the field. Dean within the first 10 minutes.
All in all it was a frustrating first 45 for the Owls as they struggled to break down their opponents, and the one time they did – with Marvin Johnson rocketing a striker into the top corner – it was flagged for offside.
Mendez-Laing was a constant thorn in their side, and almost opened the scoring after a surge down the right, however his strike was well blocked from close range.
Wednesday finished the first half with 75% of the possession and having had 10 shots on goal – but failed to take advantage as they were batted away time and time again by a resilient Morecambe defence.
Their crosses were just off the mark, their touches not quite what they needed to be, and their finishing not as clinical as was required. They’d dominated, but fans were left wanting as the half time whistle rolled around.
And to make matters worse, Dele-Bashiru had hobbled off just before the break, and wasn’t able to make it out again for the second half – the second casualty of the day – as he was replaced by Callum Paterson.
Wednesday carried on as they’d left off though, pushing the Shrimps back and looking for that opening.
Florian Kamberi thought he had it as he nodded home a cross from Byers, but once again the linesman had his flag up and the Owls’ celebrations were abruptly muted.
So, it seemed, Byers decided to take matters into his own hands.
He’d been given a starting berth in place of Massimo Luongo, and he was determined to show his worth… After Bannan laid it off to him on the edge of the box he took a touch and let rip, lasering a brilliant effort into the top corner.
Wednesday were ahead.
But while they were ahead, and deservedly so, things got even worse on the injury front…
Josh Windass chased down a ball and got off a strike inside the box, but a collision saw him flattened and in pain. His race was run, and Saido Berahino entered into the fray – a substitute allowed due to Morecambe’s Trevor Carson going off as a concussion substitute.
Wednesday remained in control, but things did get a bit hairy as the game drew to a close, with Sam Hutchinson having to clear off the line twice in a goalline scramble. It was close, but they survived.
And then, just after the fourth official held up the stoppage time board, Mendez-Laing got his rewards for another good showing as he saw his deflected strike bounce into the back of the net.
Sheffield Wednesday had won – but only time will tell how much it cost them.