Huddersfield Town picked up another point in the quest for Sky Bet Championship survival following a 0-0 draw in the Yorkshire derby with Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough.
Karlan Grant and Fraizer Campbell went closest for Town in the second half, but neither side could find a way through across a well-fought 90 minutes in South Yorkshire.
Looking to respond to Friday night’s defeat to Luton, Danny Cowley made three changes to his side for the midweek encounter, with Richard Stearman, Elias Kachunga and Steve Mounié all returning to the starting XI.
There was also a landmark appearance amongst the Town starters as Karlan Grant made his 50th start for the Club, at Hillsborough.
No extra motivation would be usually required for a Yorkshire derby with the Owls but the need for Sky Bet Championship points at the bottom end of the table provided an extra incentive on top of the local bragging right for the Terriers if it was at all needed.
Town looked to seize on those incentives early on, with returnees Stearman and Mounié linking up for the first chance of the match. The latter headed into the path of Town’s no.12 who nodded over from close range.
The Terriers were continuing to create openings from all over the pitch during a positive start in South Yorkshire.
Lewis O’Brien showcased some neat footwork on several occasions to cut into the Wednesday defensive setup from deep areas, whilst Harry Toffolo was again finding himself in attacking areas on the left.
The Town left-back cut the ball back for Emile Smith Rowe who curled a shot inches wide of the far post from just inside the penalty area, in what was the Terriers’ most threatening chance prior to the first drinks break.
There had been little action at the other end of the pitch until past the half-hour mark when Moses Odubajo drove forward from the right and unleashed a powerful effort that Jonas Lössl needed to parry away.
The break looked to have galvanised the home side and particularly Odubajo who was again causing problems down Town’s left.
After getting in behind the Terriers’ defence, he attempted to play the ball across the goal but Stearman was on hand to put in a vital interception and cut out the danger.
In the final seconds of the first 45, it was Lössl alert again to keep the hosts out. The Dane sprung to his left to superbly tip Kadeem Harris’ curling effort around the post, keeping the scores level going into the break.
After a first half of two halves in its opportunities, the two sides continued to battle after the interval with the game’s best chance so far falling to Karlan Grant on 53 minutes.
Town’s top scorer was found in a central area outside of the box by a lofted ball from Jonathan Hogg but after taking it in his stride, Grant’s effort just evaded the inside of the post.
Opportunities weren’t short at either end as the game approached the hour mark, with Lössl called into action once again to get to Massimo Luongo’s low drilled strike.
With time ticking away, the game continued to open up as both sides looked for the go-ahead goal. Substitute Fraizer Campbell went close with his first touch of the game after connecting with Toffolo’s whipped cross from the left, but the forward couldn’t keep his effort down on the stretch.
Hearts were then in Town mouths moments later. Lössl, who hadn’t put a foot out of line all evening, fumbled Adam Reach’s strike from range into the path of Alessio Da Cruz before pulling off a heroic double save, only for the flag to go up for offside on the forward anyway.
Despite pressure on both goals with a winning goal on the line in the four minutes of stoppage time, neither side could find the net as an action-packed encounter was brought to a close with the deadlock still intact and the points shared in S6.
Next up for Town is a return to the John Smith’s Stadium for the final time this season for the visit of West Bromwich Albion in the Sky Bet Championship on Friday 17 July 2020; 5.30pm kick-off.
SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY (3-4-1-2)
Joe Wildsmith; Julian Börner, Tom Lees (c), Dominic Iorfa; Kadeem Harris, Massimo Luongo (Adam Reach, 70’), Barry Bannan, Moses Odubajo; Alex Hunt (Joey Pelupessy, 58’); Jacob Murphy (Alessio Da Cruz, 58’), Josh Windass (Atdhe Nuhiu, 70’)
Cameron Dawson; Jordan Rhodes, Ben Hughes, Ciaran Brennan, Liam Shaw
HUDDERSFIELD TOWN (4-2-3-1)
Jonas Lössl; Harry Toffolo, Christopher Schindler (c), Richard Stearman, Trevoh Chalobah; Lewis O’Brien, Jonathan Hogg; Karlan Grant, Emile Smith Rowe, Elias Kachunga (Chris Willock, 70’); Steve Mounié (Fraizer Campbell, 78’)
Joel Coleman; Juninho Bacuna, Alex Pritchard, Collin Quaner, Jon Gorenc Stanković, Andy King, Demeaco Duhaney