Date:Sunday December 23 2012
22/12/12 - 3pm
Wednesday moved out of the Championship relegation zone with a 2-0 victory over Charlton Athletic at Hillsborough.
Goals from Rhys McCabe and Jeremy Helan - both impressive efforts - were enough to somewhat ease the pressure on Owls boss Dave Jones and give Wednesday crucial back-to-back wins.
Helan's second, in the 90th minute, proved important as it lifted the Owls above South Yorkshire neighbours Barnsley on goal difference and out of the bottom three.
The points were an early Christmas present for struggling Wednesday, who went into the match on the back of a crucial victory against relegation rivals Barnsley last weekend and certainly built on it against the Addicks, who have adapted to life in the Championship better than Jones's troops.
The Owls boss brought Reda Johnson back into defence after a long-term injury, allowing loanee Helan to move up and play in midfield, while Gary Madine and Chris O'Grady continued in attack.
And Madine almost got the hosts in front just five minutes in only for Leon Cort to clear his effort off the line. David Prutton had an initial shot saved by Addicks goalkeeper Ben Hamer before Madine's follow-up was cleared.
The Owls were far from dominant in the opening exchanges, however, with Charlton matching their hosts for much of the early play and Wednesday still looking shaky in certain areas of the pitch.
That said, Chris Powell's man did not carve out many clear-cut chances and they fell behind after 20 minutes through McCabe's super strike.
An Owls corner was only half-cleared and the former Rangers man was positioned at the edge of the box to drill an unstoppable volley into the back of the net for his first goal since moving to Hillsborough.
It could have got better for Jones's side but Michail Antonio sent an effort agonisingly wide of goal as the Owls looked to extend their lead.
The visitors upped their tempo as the first half drew to a close, with Yann Kermorgant appealing for a penalty while Danny Haynes also had an effort chalked off for offside, a decision that brought protests from Charlton boss Powell and saw him sent to the stands for the second half.
Charlton started the second half well and Wednesday, perhaps understandably given recent form, looked far from comfortable on their slender one-goal advantage.
It was always going to take a second goal to settle the home nerves but the Londoners were looking threatening although, again, Owls goalkeeper Chris Kirkland did not have too much to do.
Chances came at both ends, with Anthony Gardner and O'Grady going close for the Owls while Haynes should have done better with a close-range effort that he made a real meal of.
It seemed fate was for a change, with Wednesday, but the hosts had to wait until the 90th minute to seal their vital points.
It was worth the wait, however, and it was all down to Helan, who took a neat one-two before powering past the Charlton defender and drilling a low effort from an acute angle under Hamer for 2-0.
Wednesday: Kirkland, Buxton, Llera, Gardner, R Johnson, Antonio, McCabe, Prutton (Lines 67), Helan, Madine (Sidibe 86), O`Grady (Lee 75). Unused substitutes: Bywater, Taylor, J Johnson, Sidibe, Maguire.
Charlton: Hamer, Jackson, Morrison, Haynes (Hulse 79), Kerkar (Fuller 63), Kermogant, Solly, Wilson, Seaborne, Frimpong (Green 79), Cort. Unused substitutes: Sullivan, Wright-Phillips, Pritchard, Dervite.
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Date:Sunday December 23 2012
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|23. Sheff Wed||18||2||8||8||-9||14|
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