Burton Albion 1-1 Sheff Wed - 26-Aug-2017 : Match Report
Joe Mason made an instant impact on his Burton debut, grabbing a 65th-minute equaliser to hand Nigel Clough's side a deserved share of the spoils against Sheffield Wednesday.
The Brewers boss has never lost a competitive league fixture against the Owls and his latest signing ensured that run would continue to eight games, also keeping the Brewers outside of the bottom three going into the international break.
The Wolves loanee had only been on the pitch for a minute when his sharp turn and shot inside the box found the back of the net to cancel out Gary Hooper's 36th-minute opener.
Hooper had started and finished the move, catching Albion on a swift counter-attack to hand Carlos Carvalhal's side the lead.
Surging from his own half, Hooper shrugged off a challenge from Luke Murphy, setting up Steven Fletcher for a shot that was blocked. When the ball fell kindly for Jack Hunt on the right his low cross was nonchalantly flicked in by Hooper, who had continued his run into the box to pick up the pieces.
It was a rare chance for Wednesday who, apart from an excellent finish from George Boyd that was ruled out for offside, had barely threatened the Burton goal in the first period.
Albion had the better of the openings before the break, with Marvin Sordell unlucky not to get his name on the scoresheet on several occasions. The striker headed a good chance wide after just four minutes and twice saw shots deflected over the bar as Albion fashioned the clearer chances.
Wednesday were forced to change goalkeepers on 34 minutes as Keiren Westwood finally admitted defeat in trying to shake off an injury sustained in a collision with Sordell. The Irish keeper was in some discomfort and his subsequent treatment accounted for the majority of the additional seven first-half minutes.
Wednesday's goal two minutes later softened the blow of losing their influential keeper and replacement Joe Wildsmith was in the right place at the right time to save Jake Buxton's powerful header shortly after coming on.
Wildsmith also produced an excellent save in the early stages of the second half following an excellent break from Burton's on-loan winger Sean Scannell. The Huddersfield loanee made the most of space on the right to cut the ball back onto his left foot and force a smart save low down at Wildsmith's near post.
There was nothing the keeper could do though as Mason bagged the equaliser within moments of arriving on the pitch.
Home keeper Stephen Bywater was grateful to have Luke Murphy on the line to clear Daniel Pudil's hooked shot as Wednesday went in search of a winner.