Sheffield Wednesday 2 Ipswich Town 1: Joao brace lifts Wednesday over Town

Lucas Joao.
Lucas Joao.
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LUCAS JOAO crowned the signing of a new contract with a timely brace as Sheffield Wednesday secured back-to-back home wins at the expense of Paul Hurst's Ipswich Town - on a controversial afternoon which saw visiting player Aristote Nsiala score and later be dismissed.

Joao nodded the Owls ahead on 14 minutes, only for Nsiala to head home an equaliser on 40 minutes, with the hosts appealing for offside.

Replays showed that Ellis Harrison was in an offside position and not Nsiala.

But the game turned 14 minutes from time when Nsiala was dismissed for a challenge on Fernando Forestieri, with replays showing that the defender had made a clean tackle.

The pain for Ipswich was compounded when Joao soon headed in a second for the hosts following a scramble following a corner.

Ipswich lacked attacking teeth for the bulk of the first half, but Nsiala's leveller provided them with belief and they ended the half strongly, with the Owls rocking.

Earlier, the more defined threat in the final third came from Wednesday, with Barry Bannan at hub of operations and most things good from the hosts for the second successive home game.

The visitors looked susceptible from set-pieces, having conceded five times already this season and a sixth was duly added to the list, courtesy of Joao.

The Portugeuse pulled away from Trevoh Chalobah to nod home following a fine inswinging corner from Bannan - and minutes later, the hosts could - and perhaps should - have had a second.

An expertly-delivered free-kick from Bannan saw Jordan Thorniley steam into the box unchecked, but his point-blank header was wayward and wide.

Out of nothing, Town levelled in the run-up to the break, with the hosts switching off following a deflected centre from Gwion Edwards, which was helped on into the danger area by first Adetayop Edun and then Luke Chambers, with Nsiala being the beneficiary as he headed over the stranded Cameron Dawson - with home fans howling for offside.

The goal shook the Owls and Town were perilously close to taking the lead when Edun's corner was flicked on by Ellis Harrison with Nsiala again left untracked, with his far-post header cleared off the line by Liam Palmer, with Dawson also in close proximity.

Dawson then had to be alert to make a key one-handed parry to keep out Harrison's goalbound low strike.

Attacking the Kop, the Owls posted some early danger on the restart - with Marco Matias firing a tame shot wide after a slip from Jonas Knudsen sent him momentarily clear following Dawson's punt forward.

Soon after, Knudsen fared rather better to clear Bannan's effort off the line after the Scot had latched onto a pullback from close to the byline from Matt Penney.

Both sides proceeded to lose their way in an attacking sense, with Owls fans starting to call for the introduction of Fernando Forestieri and they eventually got their wish.

As the game entered the final quarter, the action dramatically swung in the hosts favour following Nsiala's dismissal and soon after, Joao was celebrating after his rebound crept over the line after his initial header struck the post following Bannan's deep corner on the right.

Sheffield Wednesday: Dawson; Palmer, Lees, Thorniley, Penney; Reach, Pelupessy, Bannan; Matias (Forestieri 72), Nuhiu, Joao (Fletcher 79). Substitutes unused: Wildsmith, Baker, Fox, Hutchinson, Kirby.

Ipswich Town; Bialkowski; Donacien, Nsiala, Chambers, Knudsen; Chalobah; Edwards, Edun (Downes 78), Nolan, Harrison (Sears 86); Jackson. Substitutes unused: Gerken, Spence, Ward, Roberts, Kenlock.

Referee: J Simpson (Lancashire).

Attendance: 22,499.