20 April 2021

Jamie Smith praises Owls’ discipline after Blackburn win boosts survival hopes

20 April 2021

Sheffield Wednesday assistant manager Jamie Smith praised his side’s discipline after a vital 1-0 victory over Blackburn kept their survival hopes alive following Josh Windass’ first-half goal.

With fellow strugglers Derby losing at Preston, it was a good night for Wednesday in their battle to beat the drop.

The Owls remain second bottom – four points behind Derby with three games remaining.

Smith said: “I thought they were really disciplined throughout the game and scored a good goal against a very good Blackburn team.

“We know they’ve got good quality in the team so I’m really pleased with the performance.

“We keep saying to the boys to be positive and to keep showing their qualities. We told the players to stay on the front foot at half-time.

“They had a lot of possession in the second half but we were disciplined without the ball.

“The win gives us belief. We have got three games to go and we will do all we can to win the three games.

“Everyone played their part today. We have got to win the next three games. If we get the nine points, we’ll then see where we are. We can’t worry about what other people are doing.”

Blackburn’s Tom Trybull tried an early long-range shot which forced Keiren Westwood to get down low to save.

Wednesday’s Kadeem Harris then fired in a shot from just outside the area which was straight at Thomas Kaminski.

Windass struck the winner after 37 minutes with a deflected shot after being set up by Harris.

As Wednesday went in search of a second goal, Palmer fired in a shot which was saved by Kaminski.

John Buckley failed to capitalise on a great chance to equalise, shooting straight at Westwood after Armstrong squared the ball to him inside the area.

Blackburn manager Tony Mowbray will look to make wholesale changes to his squad in the summer.

He said: “I thought we looked a bit jaded for a start. We looked a yard off it, for whatever reason.

“We seem to give the opposition a goal when we’re comfortable in the game and it gives them something to hang on to, which is what they managed to do. We fell a bit short.

“I think that has been the story for a lot of games. That final bit, that end product. It’s not always the finish, of course, it might be the ball in.

“It’s about trying to improve the individuals as we go along so that when we get opportunities, they pick the right pass and turn opportunities into goals.

“We need to keep working hard in training. That’s all you can do.

“It’s going to be a summer of pretty big change, I think. There are a lot of loan players and players out of contract so we’ll see how good recruitment is because that’s important.”

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