Rolando Aarons stakes his claim for a Sheffield Wednesday starting spot after helping the Owls Under-23s beat Sheffield United in the Sheffield derby

Sheffield Wednesday's Under-23s claimed the local bragging rights, defeating Sheffield United 2-0 at Bramall Lane.

Tuesday, 19th February 2019, 19:52 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th February 2019, 19:57 pm
Sheffield Wednesday loanee Rolando Aarons

Goals either side of half-time from Newcastle United loanee Rolando Aarons and attacking midfielder Conor Grant ensured Neil Thompson's side secured back-to-back victories in the Professional Development League 2.

The Owls fielded a strong line-up, handing run-outs to deadline-day recruits Dominic Iorfa, Achraf Lazaar and Aarons. Joe Wildsmith, Ash Baker, Daniel Pudil and Sam Winnall also completed the full 90 minutes.

Wednesday were forced into an early reshuffle as Jack Stobbs hobbled off in the fifth minute with a knock and was replaced by Fraser Preston.

After a scrappy, quiet opening, the visitors created the first chance of note. Preston cut in from the right flank and saw his left foot piledriver acrobatically turned behind by Simon Moore.

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The Owls, who lost the reverse fixture 2-1 last November, went ahead just before the half hour mark, with Aarons latching on a fine through ball from Grant before rifling a shot into the top corner.

Things could have got even better for Wednesday in the 36th minute when Aarons squared to Winnall in the penalty area. The centre-forward opted to shoot instead of slipping in the unmarked Grant and his effort on the turn was easily blocked.

United suffered a blow just after the restart when Northern Ireland international Conor Washington limped off with an injury.

Moments later, Wildsmith produced a stunning save to claw away defender Kean Bryan's header as the hosts pressed for an equaliser.

Blades centre-half Jake Wright gifted the Owls a second goal in the 50th minute, giving possession cheaply away to the impressive Grant, who calmly fired home.

Lazaar, who put in an accomplished display at left-back, almost grabbed a third just before the hour mark. He let fly from 30 yards but his audacious strike struck the righthand post and bounced to safety.

With 18 minutes remaining, United substitute Simeon Oure could have reduced the deficit but he volleyed over Harry Boyes' corner over the crossbar.

 

United: Moore; Ferguson, Wright, Bryan; Sheppeard, Coutts, Broadbent, York (Neal 86), Boyes; Washington (Oure 46), Greaves. Substitutes: Bennett, Dewhurst, Belehouan,

Owls: Wildsmith; Baker, Iorfa, Pudil, Lazaar (Nielsen 74); Lee, Kirby; Stobbs (Preston 5), Grant, Aarons (Hunt 69); Winnall. Substitutes: McCulloch, Borukov.