Wednesday’s slender hopes of Championship survival surely all but disappeared three minutes from time when ten-man Bristol City grabbed an equaliser in a 1-1 draw at Hillsborough this afternoon.
Having taken an early lead, we missed other good chances in the first half – including a Barry Bannan penalty – with the visitors also being reduced to 10 men in the incident leading to the spot kick.
Then, in typical fashion, we began to drop deeper as the second period progessed, allowing City to get more of a foothold in the game and what seemed the almost inevitable equaliser came with just three minutes of normal time remaining.
The draw leaves us seven points from safety and, with just four games left, the chance of a ‘great escape’ is hanging by a thread.
Wednesday got just the start we needed on four minutes, Josh Windass turning Babrry Bannan’s corner back into the danger zone at the far post and Julian Borner heading home from six yards.
The visitors threatened soon afterwards when Keiren Westwood saved from Famara Diedhiou but we then missed a great opportunity to double the lead on 21 minutes from the penalty spot.
Callum Paterson’s miscued shot was creeping in just under the bar when Henri Lansbury punched the ball over the top, with keeper Daniel Bentley beaten. The City man was red-carded but Bannan’s penalty kick lacked pace and Bentley dived to his right to save.
Bannan almost made amends soon afterwards with a fine solo run through the City defence but sent his shot wide and then his cross found the inrushing Liam Palmer at the far post but the defender’s effort came back off the joint of post and crossbar.
Josh Windass also sent a near post header just over the bar from an Adam Reach cross as the first half came to a close.
We continued to threaten early in the second half, with Windass having a shot blocked when he might have been better passing to Bannan and then Kadeem Harris failed to fully get hold of his shot at the far post and Bentley was able to block the effort from close range.
While Westwood was hardly troubled at the other end, Wednesday’s creativity and pace of the first half was largely lacking, allowing the visitors to gain confidence and more possession.
In addition, our inability to hold onto leads showed through in our failure to manage the game better in the closing stages and, with 87 minutes on the clock, Nigel Pearson’s side grabbed the equaliser, Tyreeq Bakinson firing the ball home from 20 yards to deal a severe blow to our already outside chance of avoiding the drop.
Westwood, Palmer, Hutchinson (Kachunga 90), Lees, Börner, Reach, Bannan, Pelupessy, Harris (Green 72), Windass, Paterson (Rhodes 72). Unused subs. Wildsmith, Hunt, Urhoghide, van Aken, Brennan, Dele-Bashiru.