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23:31 21st June 2012

Owls undone

The Owls were dealt a Championship blow on Tuesday night when Blackpool emerged triumphant with a hard-fought 2-0 win.
Thomas Ince’s first half goal and a strike from substitute Nathan Delfouneso near the end separated the sides as for all Wednesday’s promise and possession, the Tangerines held firm to take the points back over the Pennines.

The hosts headed into the game seeking a third consecutive win having beaten Ipswich on the road and Peterborough in S6 but were clinically undone by a composed Blackpool outfit.
But Wednesday, fielding an unchanged side save for Rhys McCabe stepping in for the injured Paul Corry, started well, with dangerman Michail Antonio proving an early menace.
Less than five minutes in, the winger took a nice through-ball from McCabe into his stride and rounded the advancing Matt Gilks but just fell short of finding a team mate from the byline.
The Tangerines, though, had dangermen of their own and not least the promising Matt Phillips, who fired a warning shot from 25 yards that whistled over Chris Kirkland’s crossbar.
And on 18 minutes, the visitors went one better and stole into the lead when a neat three-man move started by Phillips and continued by Elliot Grandin was finished from close range by Ince.
Having got their noses in front, the Seasiders seemed content to sit back and invite the Owls upfield but try as they might, the home side struggled to turn the screw in the final third despite seeing more of the ball.
Antonio forced a smart save from Gilks moments before half time and Ross Barkley dragged a shot past the post but the Owls were in search of more thrust in the second period.
Jermaine Johnson came on for Chris O’Grady yet it was fellow wideman Antonio who continued to cause the Blackpool backline problems, as evidenced on 50 minutes when the former Reading ace wriggled his way past two defenders and into space inside the box but missed the target having done all the hard work.
McCabe then curled a cute shot inches over the top after some great work down the right by Antonio as Wednesday looked far more likely in the early throes of the second period.
But Blackpool had plenty left in the tank and Neal Eardley’s header from a Gary Taylor-Fletcher cross struck the crossbar on 56 minutes before play went straight back to the other end and Barkley was a whisker away from getting something on Johnson’s deep feed.
Gilks was equal to a McCabe snapshot from distance before Miguel Llera went close from ten yards and as the clock ticked down, the feeling was that Wednesday were out of luck.
And so it proved seven minutes from time when Ludovic Sylvestre hit a firm shot across Kirkland that the keeper could only parry into the path of Delfouneso, who drilled home from six yards to seal victory.
Owls: Kirkland, Buxton, Llera, Gardner, Jones, Antonio, McCabe (Rodri 76), Semedo, Barkley, Bothroyd, O’Grady (J Johnson 46)
Unused substitutes: Davies, Mattock, Taylor, Pecnik, Madine
Blackpool: Gilks, Crainey, Eardley, M Phillips (Dicko 90), Grandin, Ince, Taylor-Fletcher (Delfouneso 77), Sylvestre, Baptiste, Basham, Cathcart
Unused substitutes: Halstead, Gomes, Harris, Angel, Broadfoot 


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.