Windass winner keeps Championship survival hopes alive

Wednesday kept our flickering Championship survival hopes alive with a precious 1-0 win over Blackburn at Hillsborough this evening.

We went into the game knowing that defeat for us and victory for Derby at Preston would see us relegated to division one but that scenario was reversed, with a Josh Windass goal giving us three points at S6 while the Rams were beaten 3-0 at Deepdale.

Now we sit four points behind Derby  – and safety – both with three games left and we play them away on the last day of the season. However, sandwiched between us are Rotherham, on the same 39 points total as Wednesday but with three matches in hand.

The all-important goal against Blackburn came on 37 minutes when Kadeem Harris turned Adam Reach’s cross back into the path of Windass and he sidefooted home from 12 yards, via a deflection off defender Darragh Lenihan.

Blackburn had looked the sharper side in the opening half-hour, Tom Trybull forcing a diving save out of Keiren Westwood after just three minutes and Sam Gallagher shooting wide when well placed.

Windass shot over the top from close range when Harris crossed and Blackburn’s Joe Rothwell saw a diving header saved by Keiren Westwood on 36 minutes.

However, Windass struck with that crucial goal a minute later and we missed more chances in a strong attacking spell before the break.

Tom Lees volleyed over from Barry Bannan’s free kick, then Reach saw his fierce 15-yarder saved by keeper Thomas Kaminski, with Lenihan blocking the follow-up from Windass.

Liam Palmer and Julian Borner both had chances soon after the restart and Palmer had another excellent opportunity midway through the half, shooting straight at Kaminski when Reach’s cross found him in space inside the box at the far post.

Blackburn’s neat passing game always threatened to unlock Wednesday’s defence at the other end and their best opening came 13 minutes from time when they broke clear but John Buckley shot straight at Westwood.

We breathed a huge sigh of relief and then showed better game management than on Saturday to hold on for those crucial three points.

Westwood, Palmer, Lees, Hutchinson, Börner (Urhoghide 90), Reach, Bannan, Pelupessy, Harris (Paterson 75), Rhodes (Green 75), Windass. Unused subs. Wildsmith, Brennan, Penney, Hunt, Shaw, Dele-Bashiru.


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