Oxford United v Sheffield Wednesday: Owls collapse again as ex-player haunts his former club

Sheffield Wednesday were downed by a former player in a disappointing collapse against Oxford United.
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Ex-Owl, Sam Winnall, was the hero for Karl Robinson’s side as they twice came from behind against a Wednesday side that only had themselves to blame in defeat at Kassam Stadium.

In fairness, Oxford actually started the brighter of the two sides… They had quite a lot of the ball in the opening few minutes, and spent plenty of time in the Wednesday half.

But then the Owls stepped it up a gear.

Sheffield Wednesday faced Oxford United on Saturday afternoon.Sheffield Wednesday faced Oxford United on Saturday afternoon.
Sheffield Wednesday faced Oxford United on Saturday afternoon.
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With just over 10 minutes played, a delightful bit of interplay between Lee Gregory, Massimo Luongo and Bannan saw it fall for the captain on the edge of the box, and he dispatched it beautifully into the bottom corner with his left foot.

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There were strong performances all over the field, with Luongo standing out with some important tackles and interceptions, while Marvin Johnson had probably his best half in a Wednesday shirt so far down the left side – overlapping nicely with Nathaniel Mendez-Laing.

Both sides had what looked like decent penalty shouts turned down, with Will Finnie opting to wave appeals from both teams away – with VAR it’s likely that at least one of them would’ve been given.

And despite a strong half from Moore’s side, it would ultimately end in disappointment as a hanging cross found Matty Taylor, who headed past Bailey Peacock-Farrell and into the back of the Wednesday net.

The break came and went, and the Owls came out unchanged as they hoped to get themselves back in front.

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It didn’t start well though, with The U’s controlling things early doors, and Moore responded by introducing Josh Windass into the fray – it worked.

Within moments of coming on he found the back of the net, with Gregory slipping him in after the Owls substitute pulled off a lovely dummy to create space for himself. The Wednesdayites went wild.

But it didn’t last long.

Almost from the kick off the hosts were level once again, and it was Taylor who did the business once more.

A deflected shot found its way to his feet, Peacock-Farrell saved his first effort, but could only watch on as the ball bobbled off the number nine and over his head. Another critical phase in which Wednesday were punished.

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After that, it was Oxford asking all the questions. They had the Owls on the backfoot, and Mark Sykes forced a strong save out of BPF with a shot that looked to be heading into the top corner.

But they kept turning the screw, and despite a bit of a spell of possession from the visitors, it was Oxford who looked the more threatening. And then it happened.

Liam Palmer did well to clear a deep cross, but the resulting corner would be what turned things around. It was whipped in, and Winnall was on hand to head home.

It was another goal conceded from a set-piece for Wednesday, a problem that has plagued them all season.

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Wednesday huffed and puffed, Gregory and Jack Hunt headed over and wide in stoppage time, but they weren’t able to show the same comebackability that saw Oxford fight back twice.

And so it ended – an all-too-familiar story.