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Late strike sinks Lions

PUBLISHED

17:03 25th August 2012


Wednesday hit a dramatic late winner against Millwall to take the points from a pulsating encounter at Hillsborough on Saturday.

Jermaine Johnson struck first for the Owls in the first half before the hosts were twice hit on the counter with goals from James Henry and skipper Liam Trotter.

Wednesday then proceeded to dominate the second period and levelled matters through Miguel Llera before the big Spaniard hit a thumping decider in front of the Kop to seal victory.

Having posted four points from their first two games, the Owls were out to extend that solid opening but both sides made an encouraging start to the game.

Recalled striker Gary Madine – in for Chris O’Grady – tested Maik Taylor with a low drive while at the other end, Llera made a superb last-ditch challenge to deny Darius Henderson, who broke free inside the penalty area to bear down on goal.

The Owls then began to gain the upper hand and deservedly took the lead on 20 minutes.

The in-form Jermaine Johnson took possession 30 yards out and advanced to drill an unstoppable drive into the top corner to put the hosts in the ascendancy.

Millwall responded with Karleigh Osborne hitting a half volley over the crossbar from a set piece before, on 35 minutes, the visitors were level.

Henderson fed an accurate ball from the right flank into the path of Henry, who clipped a clever shot over Chris Kirkland and high into the net.

Then, just as it seemed the teams would head down the tunnel at half time level pegging, Millwall stole into the lead three minutes before the break.

Henry spotted Trotter making an angled run into the box and found the midfielder with a neat ball that was duly dispatched to give the Lions the advantage.

The Owls needed a positive start to the second half and attacked from the first whistle.

Spanish star Rodri – quiet in the first half – had a shout for a penalty waved away straight after the resumption and Michail Antonio sent a blistering shot narrowly over the bar moments later.

Jermaine Johnson unleashed a piledriver from distance that was too hot for Taylor to handle before a stunning Rodri volley almost found the target after a sublime pass from Antonio.

Wednesday introduced O’Grady on the hour and the one-way traffic continued, with Millwall struggling to get the ball out of their own half.

Taylor twice saved well at his near post from O’Grady as the Owls turned up the heat and the inevitable equaliser came on 68 minutes.

Antonio sent a low cross into the danger zone from which Reda Johnson hit the post. Taylor denied Llera once with a reflex save but could do nothing to prevent the defender forcing the ball over the line from the rebound.

Wednesday pressed for a winner and duly got it with a minute left on the clock.

Antonio’s cross triggered a goalmouth scramble which Llera concluded with a hit from close range that stunned the Lions and ensured two home wins in a week for Wednesday.

Owls: Kirkland, Buxton, Llera, Beevers, R Johnson, Antonio, Semedo, McCabe, J Johnson, Madine (O’Grady 58), Rodri (Pecnik 90)

Unused substitutes: Bywater, Lee, Coke, Prutton, Maguire

Millwall: Taylor, Dunne, Wright (Racon 72), Trotter, Henderson, Lowry, Henry, Keogh, Abdou, Osborne, Malone

Unused substitutes: Forde, Marquis, Shittu, Feeney, Batt, Taylor