Swansea City 1-1 Sheffield Wednesday: Swans held by owls as Pulis shoots first point

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Liam Palmer emerges under pressure from Swansea duo Liam Cullen and Yan Dhanda on Wednesday

Swansea City were held to a 1-1 draw by Sheffield on Wednesday as Tony Pulis won his first point as Owls boss.

Wednesday was on course for the win after Adam Reach scored from a well-worked corner to give the Pulis side a deserved lead at the break.

But Swansea, who has lost only twice in the league this season, improved significantly in the second half and equalized thanks to an elegant finish from six-goal top scorer Andre Aye.

Still, a disciplined and hard-working display on Wednesday was enough to deny Swansea a fourth straight home win and give Pulis his first positive result since taking over from Garry Monk on November 13.

The draw means Swansea remains fourth in the championship, while Wednesday remains 23rd.

The very experienced Pulis has only been in charge at Hillsborough for 12 days, but there are already signs he is making a mark.

Swansea had so little impact in the opening 45 minutes it felt like Wednesday had an extra man on the pitch.

With Pulis – usually – barking a mixture of commands and encouraging words throughout, his rearguard held Swansea at bay with some comfort.

The only threats came from the visitors, with Julian Borner shooting straight at Swansea goalkeeper Freddie Woodman after a throw-in was not cleared.

Pulis is renowned for his stuck work, so it might come as no surprise that the first goal of his reign – and Wednesday’s first outside a penalty against Bournemouth in 632 minutes of the championship football – came from ‘a dead balloon.

With a crowd of players in the six-yard penalty area, Barry Bannan rolled the ball low to the penalty spot and the unmarked Reach hit home for the first time.

Swansea’s Ryan Bennett climbs highest to win a header

Needing an answer, Swans boss Steve Cooper sent Kasey Palmer and Ayew in good shape to the break and the latter immediately helped create the home side’s first chance as Jamal Lowe shot wide in the first post.

Palmer then saw a deflected effort saved by Joe Wildsmith – who had come in the first half after Keiren Westwood limped while squeezing his groin – before Ayew’s class brought in the leveler.

The Ghanaian captain had a lot of work to do when he took possession of the ball in the penalty area but slipped past a few defenders before guiding a shot into the far corner of the net.

Swansea was now the questioning team on offense, with Yan Dhanda twice closing in with long-range efforts before Ayew’s late drive was pushed over the bar by Wildsmith.

And there was frustration for the hosts at the end when they shouted for handball in a scrum in the box on Wednesday, but referee Andy Woolmer dismissed the appeals.

Line-up

Swansea

  • 1Woodman
  • 44CabangoBooked at 26 minutes
  • 2Bennett
  • 26NaughtonReplaced byPalmerat 45 ‘minutes
  • 23Roberts
  • septBlack-smith
  • 8GrimesBooked at 48 minutes
  • 24BidwellReplaced byManningat 61 ‘minutes
  • 21DhandaBooked at 57 minutes
  • 9LoweReplaced byRoutledgeat 61 ‘minutes
  • 20CullenReplaced byA Ayewat 45 ‘minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Manning
  • 6Fulton
  • dixA Ayew
  • 13Chose
  • 15Routledge
  • 22Latibeaudière
  • 30Rushesha
  • 31Tonnelier
  • 45Palmer

Sheff Wednesday

  • 1WestwoodReplaced byWildsmithat 14 ‘minutes
  • 2Palmer
  • 15lis
  • 13Bound
  • 4from AachenReplaced byShawat 69 ‘minutes
  • 22Odubajo
  • 5Paterson
  • dixBannan
  • 21LuongoReplaced byPelupessyat 70 ‘minutes
  • 11Reach
  • 20RhodesReplaced byPay attentionat 56 ‘minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Pelupessy
  • 14Penney
  • 17Dele-Bashiru
  • 19Urhoghide
  • 24Brown
  • 26Shaw
  • 28Wildsmith
  • 29Hunt
  • 45Pay attention

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