Blackburn Rovers 2 Sheffield Wednesday 1 - Two late goals condemn Garry Monk's side to a disappointing away defeat

Sheffield Wednesday slumped to a 2-1 defeat at Blackburn Rovers to slip out of the Championship play-offs.

Saturday, 2nd November 2019, 2:10 pm
Updated Saturday, 2nd November 2019, 7:47 pm
Owls loanee Jacob Murphy

Garry Monk's side looked on course for maximum points when substitute Jacob Murphy headed them ahead in the 83rd minute.

But two quickfire goals from Tosin Adarabioyo and substitute John Buckley gave Rovers their first win in seven outings.

Defeat means the Owls fall to seventh in the Championship. It is only their second loss in nine league matches under Monk.

At a rain-lashed Ewood Park, Wednesday created the first chance of note. Sam Hutchinson, wearing the captain's armband in the absence of the injured Barry Bannan, nodded Joey Pelupessy's corner narrowly over.

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Rovers entered the contest on the back of a six-match winless streak but Tony Mowbray's men forced Keiren Westwood into an excellent save in the eighth minute. Stewart Downing whipped in a teasing delivery from the left and Sam Gallagher saw his powerful header acrobatically tipped behind by Westwood.

It was a fairly low-key start to proceedings as the two teams struggled to string much together.

Kieran Lee, making his first start since September 22, freed Kadeem Harris down the left and the former Cardiff City man drove towards the byline before seeing his fierce left foot effort saved by Christian Walton at his near post.

Rovers top-scorer Bradley Dack threatened to unlock the Owls' well-organised backline midway in the first period after exchanging passes with Downing but the forward's shot was blocked by the imperious Julian Börner. The hosts appealed in vain for a penalty but referee Andy Woolmer was unmoved.

Dominic Iorfa nearly opened the scoring on the half hour mark. He peeled away to the back post to get on the end of Pelupessy's free kick only for Tosin Adarabioyo to clear it away from near the goal line.

Wednesday survived a scare when Gallagher flicked Downing's set piece into Derrick Williams' path but the full-back's first touch let him down, allowing Westwood to rush off his line and gather the ball.

But the visitors finished the half on top.

Fletcher's rasping left foot volley flew wide of Walton's right post after Rovers failed to clear their lines.

Moments later, the big striker was in the thick of the action again as his looping header from Fox's centre went on to the top of the net.

Blackburn could have taken the lead just after half-time following a rapid counter attack. Gallagher fizzed in a low cross from the left and it took a great sliding challenge from Börner to stop Adam Armstrong from testing the reflexes of Westwood. The loose ball fell invitingly to Lewis Travis but the midfielder's strike from close range was kept out by Westwood.

Wednesday looked devoid of ideas in the final third so it was no surprise when Monk threw on Fernando Forestieri just after the hour mark.

Forestieri's introduction failed to spark the Owls into life as Rovers enjoyed a good spell of pressure.

Westwood came to the visitors rescue, diving low to his right to parry Adam Armstrong's shot before producing a stunning save to tip over substitute Joe Rothwell's header.

But Wednesday showed great character to weather the storm and hit back through Harris, whose right foot curler was turned away by Walton.

Monk freshened up his attacking his attacking options by throwing on Jacob Murphy and Atdhe Nuhiu.

It was Nuhiu that nearly broke the deadlock as his header from Lee's fine cross drifted agonisingly over.

However, the 2,800 plus travelling fans were celebrating in the 83rd minute when Murphy put them ahead. Fox sent in a cross towards the near post and Fletcher reacted quickest to nip in and hit the post but Murphy was on hand to head home from two yards out to claim his second goal in Owls colours.

But their joy was short-lived as Adarabioyo rose highest to send a looping header over Westwood.

Things got even better for Blackburn in added on time when Buckley claimed his first goal in senior football to complete a remarkable turnaround. Buckley's deflected shot left Westwood stranded to spark wild scenes in three sides of the ground.

To compound a frustrating afternoon for the Owls, Forestieri's attempt from outside the penalty area took a wicked deflection and struck Walton's left hand upright and Hutchinson couldn't turn the ball home from the rebound.

Blackburn: Walton; Bennett, Nyambe, Adarabioyo, Williams; Travis, Downing (Buckley 86); Holtby (Rothwell 67), Dack, Armstrong; Gallagher (Graham 63). Substitutes: Leutwiler, Bell, Evans, Johnson.

Owls: Westwood; Palmer, Iorfa, Börner, Fox; Hutchinson, Pelupessy (Forestieri 61), Lee; Reach (Murphy 70), Harris (Nuhiu 77), Fletcher. Substitutes: Dawson, Winnall, Odubajo, Hunt.

Attendance: 14,147 (2,889)

Referee: Andy Woolmer (Northamptonshire)