Stoke City 0 Sheffield Wednesday 0: Bruce left to rue "big decision" following Potters stalemate

Sheffield Wednesday head coach Steve Bruce.
Sheffield Wednesday head coach Steve Bruce.
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Sheffield Wednesday boss Steve Bruce was left frustrated after George Boyd had a goal disallowed for offside but was pleased with a battling display from his side that earned a goalless draw at Stoke.

The Owls, who are unbeaten in 12 league games following a revival in fortunes since Bruce's appointment, saw Boyd's first-half strike ruled out for an offside decision.

Bruce hit out at the match officials, however, he was satisfied with the away point.

Bruce said: "The big chance, we think he (Boyd) was onside for the goal. The linesman took an eternity to make it (the decision), and when you look at it, I thought the rule was to benefit the attacker, not the other way.

"So that was a big decision for us. That would have been nice for us to go 1-0 up but with all the problems we've had, we'll take the draw.

"Considering the problems we had with Rolando (Aarons) missing out, we're playing makeshift at the minute, if the truth be known.

"There's no way I wanted to play (Gary) Hooper, then we've got (Sam) Winnall, (Fernando) Forestieri has had his problems and (Steven) Fletcher wasn't fit so it wasn't ideal.

"You come here, they have some good players to be fair to them, very good players for this division, so considering the problems we've had, we haven't played anywhere near where we feel we've been able to.

"It's a point but it's not particularly what we want."

The visitors' disallowed goal came on the half hour when Boyd was played in by Gary Hooper before rounding goalkeeper Jack Butland and scoring, only for the linesman's flag to deny him.

After the break, Wednesday had goalkeeper Keiren Westwood to thank as he superbly thwarted Bojan from close-range before keeping out Benik Afobe and Tom Ince.

The South Yorkshire outfit had late chances to snatch maximum points when substitute Winnall headed wide at the back post and Liam Palmer was kept out by Butland, to leave them three points off the top six in 11th.

Stoke manager Nathan Jones felt his side lacked a cutting edge in front of goal.

Jones said: "There were so many positives from the performance but we just lacked the final touch to put those chances away .

"In terms of the structure, work rate, how we passed the ball, controlled possession, controlled the game, how we got into the final third, how we created chances, I was delighted.

"That it is as good as we have played. We are evolving into a real fluent side. I was delighted with so many aspects of the performance.

"But I'm just a little but frustrated as that's the fourth 0-0 on the trot and I don't know how that has happened.

"I think the goal was offside, that might have changed the complexion of the game but if one of our 12 opportunities had gone in, in any way, it would have been a different game.

"I thought we've put in a wonderful performance, which has just lacked a final touch as we had our chances."