Sheffield Wednesday: Three ups and one down from the Owls' 3-1 loss at Birmingham City

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Sheffield Wednesday dropped to 15th in the Championship after their away defeat to rejuvenated Birmingham City.

Here are the highs and lows.

A frustrated Liam Palmer after failing to convert a first half chance to make it two nil

A frustrated Liam Palmer after failing to convert a first half chance to make it two nil

STEVEN FLETCHER

He led the line superbly. His clever touches and intelligent runs kept Birmingham's defence on their toes. Fletcher was in the mood from the off, rattling the post with a venomous 20-yard strike inside the opening two minutes. He deservedly notched his third goal of the campaign, firing home after Morgan Fox's header back across the six-yard box. Boss Jos Luhukay said he took Fletcher off with 12 minutes to go due to fatigue.

Jos Luhukay explains why Steven Fletcher was substituted against Birmingham City

CAMERON DAWSON

Jos Luhukay accepts Sheffield Wednesday must improve defensively

Jos Luhukay accepts Sheffield Wednesday must improve defensively

The academy graduate can hold his head up high despite Wednesday's third straight Championship defeat. He barely put a foot wrong and commanded his area with confidence and authority. Dawson pulled off a fine reflex save to foil Birmingham midfielder Gary Gardner in the first half but the 23-year-old was left horribly exposed by his defence for all three of the Blues’ goals.

Dom Howson’s Sheffield Wednesday player ratings

THE OPENING 40 MINUTES

Wednesday kicked off on the front foot, playing at a high tempo and with intensity. Fletcher's predatory finish in the 19th minute was no more than they deserved after a fast, enterprising start. Liam Palmer spurned two excellent chances to increase the Owls' lead as Luhukay's men dictated proceedings. A top team would have killed off the contest there and then.

Morgan Fox at the final whistle at Birmingham City

Morgan Fox at the final whistle at Birmingham City

Dom Howson’s match analysis

DEFENSIVE WOES

Things could have been so different had Palmer taken one of the chances that fell his way. But Connor Mahoney's sumptuous equaliser on the stroke of half-time knocked Wednesday out of their stride and swung the momentum Birmingham's way. The hosts were much-improved after the break, with in-form strikers Lukas Jutkiewicz and Che Adams terrorising the Owls' defence.