Sheffield Wednesday penalty heartbreak as Southampton are given a real battle - Joe Crann's verdict

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Sheffield Wednesday gave a very good account of themselves against Southampton in the Carabao Cup.

Wednesday took a surprise lead in the first half as Josh Windass powerfully drove the ball home after a delicate Fisayo Dele-Basiru lay-off, but a familiar story of missed chances went into the break at 1-1 following James Ward-Prowse’s goal from the spot – Marvin Johnson was at fault after bringing down Moussa Djenepo in the box.

The second half was back and forth despite the hosts having the much better chances, but the lack of goals meant it would be decided by a shootout – Dominic Iorfa, sadly, was the one who saw his saved.

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Going for it

Moore wasn’t joking when he said he was going into the two cup games against Morecambe and Southampton with the intention of winning both.

Some had expected him to name a ‘weakened’ side against the Saints, but that certainly wasn’t the case as pretty much all of their big names started – just a few days before they return to League One action against Accrington Stanley.

It was a bold move by the Owls boss considering they were playing a team two divisions above them and they were the definite underdogs, but it paid off as they gave a very good account of themselves and could well have won it with better finishing.

Sheffield Wednesday faced Southampton in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday evening.Sheffield Wednesday faced Southampton in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday evening.
Sheffield Wednesday faced Southampton in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday evening.

That midfield three

Not one of them looked out of place against a Premier League midfield that featured the incredibly talented James Ward-Prowse, and have plenty of experience in top-flight football.

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Bannan showed off his excellent technical ability on many occasions, Dele-Bashiru played with the fearlessness of a player that is riding the crest of a wave, and Bakinson continues to look like a bit of a steal as he helped dictate things with a strength and range of passing that was incredibly pleasing on the high.

‘Fizz’ got an assist, but his two teammates probably should have got one for themselves as well given the chances spurned by the visitors.

Wednesdayites Wednesday nights

We talk about them a lot, but it would be completely remiss of us not to mention the travelling Wednesdayites this evening.

Whether they came by car, or coach, or train, about 2,400 made the long old round trip to Southampton on a Wednesday evening to cheer on their side in a game that they weren’t ever expected to win.

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They were in fine voice with chants of ‘We’re going up, you’re going down’ and ‘Premier League, you’re having a laugh’, and it was good they got a goal to celebrate.

A conversation I had before the game summed things up, really… I mentioned to one fan on the train what a good effort it was to make the trip, and he said, ‘Nowt better to do’. They turn up, and will keep turning up. Just because. Superb effort from them once more.

The kids

They didn’t come on, but it was really nice to see Bailey Cadamarteri, Rio Shipston and Pierce Charles in with the seniors for a game like this.

It will have been a great experience for them to feel what it’s like to be around players like Bannan and Windass on a matchday, and to get a familiarity with being in front of a crowd of thousands of fans.