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Oakwell Stadium (ATT 12,484) 15th December 2012 - Kick off 17:20 Ref: S Attwell

Barnsley Barnsley vs Sheffield Wednesday Sheff Wed

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Sheff Wed 1

C O'Grady (35)

Sky Sports 2 HD

Sheffield Wednesday secured a vital 1-0 Championship win over Barnsley at Oakwell

Last Updated: 15/12/12 7:51pm

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Chris O'Grady: Scored the winner

Chris O'Grady: Scored the winner

Chris O'Grady lifted the pressure on Dave Jones as Sheffield Wednesday secured a 1-0 Championship win over Barnsley at Oakwell.

Wednesday went into the game with their fellow strugglers propping up the table - but banked a precious three points thanks to O'Grady's goal on 35 minutes.

The Owls had lost their previous seven games in the Championship which left the former Cardiff boss clinging on to his job, but O'Grady's first-half goal earned the vital points and stopped the rot.

The goal was shrouded in controversy, though, as O'Grady tapped home after Barnsley goalkeeper Luke Steele had dropped the ball under the challenge of Gary Madine, with television replays showing a push.

Wednesday rode their luck in holding on for the win and Keith Hill's men will feel hard done by in losing a game they controlled for large parts as Marcus Tudgay could have had a hat-trick of headers.

While Jones will be breathing easy tonight the same cannot be said of Hill, who is coming under the cosh from Reds fans unhappy at an 11-game winless run. His future could be decided after the Christmas period.

It was no surprise that there was not too much quality on show early on given the respective poor runs of their sides, though a rasping drive from Stephen Dawson stung the palms of Chris Kirkland as Barnsley attempted to gain the initiative.

Neither side could wrestle control, though with no love lost between these two clubs - separated by just 13 miles - there was plenty to keep referee Stuart Attwell busy as the tackles flew in.

With Barnsley enjoying a spell of possession, Wednesday stole the lead 10 minutes before the break. Lewis Buxton found space down the right and delivered a searching cross that under duress from Madine's challenge Steele dropped and O'Grady turned into an unguarded net.

Steele was furious and wanted a foul, which TV replays suggest was apparent, but Attwell was having none of it.

The Reds should have had an instant response, though, as Tudgay headed over from six yards out after an enticing delivery from Scott Golbourne.

Barnsley started the second half strongly with Craig Davies forcing a low save out of Kirkland, who parried a free-kick before Miguel Llera cleared with a red shirt ready to pounce.

That all changed in the final 10 minutes as former Wednesday striker Tudgay headed straight at Kirkland, Marlon Harewood had an effort blocked and then Tudgay again saw a header cleared off the line by David Prutton as Barnsley threw every forward in search of a leveller.

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Matches

Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Leicester City 42 90
2 Burnley 42 83
3 Derby County 42 75
4 Queens Park Rangers 42 73
5 Wigan Athletic 41 67
6 Reading 42 64
7 Brighton and Hove Albion 42 64
8 Ipswich Town 42 64
9 Bournemouth 42 62
10 Blackburn Rovers 42 60
11 Nottingham Forest 42 59
12 Middlesbrough 42 58
13 Watford 41 57
14 Bolton Wanderers 42 54
15 Sheffield Wednesday 42 50
16 Leeds United 42 50
17 Huddersfield Town 42 46
18 Birmingham City 41 43
19 Doncaster Rovers 42 43
20 Blackpool 42 42
21 Charlton Athletic 41 41
22 Millwall 42 40
23 Barnsley 42 39
24 Yeovil Town 42 36