Owls miss out
Wednesday finished on the wrong end of the odd goal in three from an entertaining contest with Burnley at Hillsborough.
Two strikes in five first half minutes from Danny Ings and Sam Vokes did the damage to the Owls, who pulled one back after the break through David Prutton but it was too little too late and the visitors made the short hop back over the Pennines with all three points.
The Clarets arrived in S6 on the back of an impressive start to the campaign having posted a point against local rivals Bolton last weekend before thumping York 4-0 in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday.
Despite losing leading marksman Charlie Austin to QPR on the eve of the season, goals have not been in short supply for Burnley but it was Wednesday that threatened first when Jeremy Helan screwed wide after Michail Antonio found space to cross.
Antonio then picked out new recruit Jacques Maghoma but again the ball fell the wrong side of the post.
It was a bright start for the Owls but the visitors carved the best opening of the early exchanges when Kieran Trippier spooned a high ball to Vokes only for the striker to hit high over the bar from 12 yards.
Burnley went close, though, on 17 minutes. A loose ball fell kindly for Vokes but this time the Welshman was thwarted by a last-ditch challenge from Kamil Zayatte.
Helan fizzed a long ranger wide at the other end before Maghoma forced Tom Heaton into a diving save from a well-placed free kick.
Prutton hit an Antonio cross into the side netting as Wednesday continued to ask more of the questions, then Danny Lafferty could consider himself fortunate not to guide a Maghoma feed past his own goalkeeper.
For all their possession and enterprise, though, he Owls couldn’t make the breakthrough – but Burnley did exactly that twice in a five-minute purple patch.
First, on 32 minutes, Ross Wallace burst into space down the right and looped a teasing ball to the far post, where the onrushing Ings headed past Kirkland.
And five minutes later, the visitors doubled their lead. Again it was a cross from the right – this time Trippier the architect – and Vokes nodded into the far corner to leave the luckless Owls stunned going into half time.
Chris Maguire was introduced from the bench for the start of the second half and almost made an instant impact, drilling a fierce drive that Heaton saved low to his right.
Home debutant Atdhe Nuhiu was a whisker away with a glancing header from Maghoma’s cross as the Owls started the second period with zest.
But, with the benefit of a two-goal cushion, Burnley were always going to be a threat on the break and Wallace almost profited from a quickfire Clarets attack on the hour but brushed the side netting.
Play was soon back in tbe Burnley half and Nuhiu again went close with a header as Heaton pulled off a stunning save at the foot of the post and blocked the rebound from Antonio.
But on 71 minutes, Wednesday finally got some reward. Liam Palmer sent an inviting ball with pace into the near post and Prutton arrowed a firm header into the back of the net.
The goal was the boost the Owls needed and almost all of the possession was theirs as the clock wound down.
The Clarets still had their moments however and Vokes brought the best out of Kirkland and Vokes went close from the resulting corner.
But Wednesday hit back with Maguire denied once more by Heaton and again by a David Edgar block.
And although the ball barely left the Burnley half in the six minutes of stoppage time, the Lancashire side held firm to extend their productive start to the new campaign.
Owls: Kirkland, Palmer, Zayatte, Gardner, Floro (Maguire 46), Maghoma (Lavery 82), Prutton, Coke, Helan, Nuhiu, Antonio
Burnley: Heaton, Wallace (Edgar 73), Jones, Lafferty, Vokes, Shackell, Stanislas (Arfield 33), Trippier, Ings, Marney, Long