Sheffield Wednesday 1 Oxford 0: Carvalhal set to strengthen squad

Owls' Caolan Lavery with Utd's Cheyenne Dunkley
Owls' Caolan Lavery with Utd's Cheyenne Dunkley
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Sheffield Wednesday head coach Carlos Carvalhal was pleased to see his side go through to the third round of the Capital One Cup with a 1-0 victory at home to Oxford United but still has his sights set on strengthening his squad.

Atdhe Nuhiu was the match-winner, scoring the only goal of the game early in the second half.

The result extends Wednesday’s unbeaten run at home since the start of the season to four games but the Portuguese manager is still looking for reinforcements before the transfer window closes next week.

“The main achievement from the game is that we’re through to the next round,” he said.

“It was a typical cup game. We had a lot of chances, missing five or six clear chances in the first half.

“The opponents had nothing to lose. When it is 1-0, the opponents put more players in attack in the last 10 minutes, but for about 80 per cent of the time, we had control of the match with the opportunities.

“I felt that fans enjoyed large parts of the game, but it was difficult for us to put the ball in the goal.

“We play Middlesbrough on Saturday so you don’t have much time before the next game.”

He added: “We know exactly what we are missing and we are working hard.

“We’ll see what happens in the transfer window. I believe we’ll be stronger with more options. I never talk about players, but I have some wishes. Players can go out and some can come in. Anything can happen.”

Goalkeeper Sam Slocombe came to Oxford’s rescue early on, producing a good save to deny Tom Lees.

The breakthrough came 10 minutes into the second half when Nuhiu scored with a close-range header after the Oxford defence failed to deal effectively with a cross from the left.

The visitors threatened to produce an instant response when Callum O’Dowda found himself in space inside the area, but he put his shot wide.

Substitute Marco Matias went close to increasing Wednesday’s lead midway through the second half when his far post header from Modou Sougou’s cross forced a fine save from Slocombe.

Oxford boss Michael Appleton said: “I am obviously disappointed to lose the game, probably more because of the goal we conceded. We felt it was a foul on the goalkeeper in the lead up to it, so it’s a bit disappointing from that point of view.

“I was delighted with the way some of the players performed. Some of them have not played for a while and it was a good opportunity for them against a decent side.

“We made six changes because we’ve had a lot of games recently. We’ve got a very small squad but we feel we’ve got a strong squad for our level in terms of quality.

“We can’t afford to carry many people and we were just carrying a few knocks after Saturday.”

The Owls will travel to Newcastle United in the third round next month.

Sheff Wed: Price, Hunt, Lees, Sasso, Helan, Semedo, Wallace, Lee, Lopez, Lavery, Nuhiu. Subs: Sougou, Palmer, Hutchinson, Marco Matias, McGugan, Bus, Wildsmith.

Oxford Utd: Slocombe, Long, Mullins, Dunkley, Skarz, MacDonald, Ruffels, Lundstram, O’Dowda, Hoban, Taylor. Subs: Baldock, Roofe, Wright, Rose, Sercombe, Hylton, Crocombe.

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