Nuhiu the two-goal hero in Owls fightback

Two goals in the last 20 minutes from Atdhe Nuhiu saw Wednesday claw back a point in a 3-3 draw with Blackburn at Hillsborough, in a total reversal of fortunes from the midweek game at the City Ground.

Just as Forest staged a late revival from 3-1 down on Tuesday evening, so the Owls did the same today and we might then have completed the turnaround with a sensational winner – and a Nuhiu hat-trick – in the dying seconds.

Wednesday gifted Blackburn – and Jordan Rhodes – the opener on 15 minutes, Miguel Llera and Sam Hutchinson getting in each other’s way and failing to clear after Lewis Buxton’s weak header, allowing Rhodes to pounce on the six-yard box for probably his easiest goal of the season.

Buxton levelled matters in front of the Kop on the half-hour, turning home Chris Maguire’s left-wing corner at the far post and, while Wednesday were the team more likely to score, we always looked fragile when defending and Blackburn had taken a 3-1 lead by half-time with Craig Conway’s low 25-yarder beating Chris Kirkland and then Michael Keane stealing in virtually unmarked to head home the third.

There was little to suggest a Wednesday rally in the early stages of the second half and Kirkland pulled off a double save from Rhodes and Rudy Gestede to keep the Owls just about in the game.

However, the fightback began on 72 minutes when Michail Antonio produced a typically powerful run into the box on the left, his pull back came off Robinson and Nuhiu was on hand to knock home the rebound.

Four minutes into added time, Llera’s shot was blocked but rebounded into the penalty area and Nuhiu smahed the ball, via Robinson’s despairing hand, into the roof of the net for the equaliser.

And the second-half revival almost became a miracle win seconds later when Antonio’s excellent low cross found Nuhiu, his close-range shot was saved by Robinson but Lavery fired the loose ball over the top to deny the Owls all three points.

* The game with also marked the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy and a minute’s silence was impeccably observed prior to kick off to remember the 96 Liverpool fans who lost their lives at our ground at the FA Cup semi final on April 15, 1989.

Ninety six red roses were also placed on white seats at the Leppings Lane end of the ground where the tragedy unfolded and Stuart Gray and Rovers manager Gary Bowyer placed wreaths at the same end before kick off, which was delayed until 3.07pm … a minute after the cup tie was halted 25 years ago.


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