Sheffield Wednesday: Coach Neil Thompson pays tribute to Owls kids after narrow home win

George Hirst

George Hirst

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Development boss Neil Thompson admitted his Wednesday side rode their luck against Queens Park Rangers.

George Hirst’s fourth goal in two matches stretched the Owls’ lead at the top of the Under-23 Professional Development League North table to 12 points.

Connor Kirby

Connor Kirby

But Thompson’s side were outplayed for long periods of the second half and indebted to shot-stopper Dan Wallis for recording a clean sheet.

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He said: “There were a lot of tired bodies out there at the end but fair play to them because they put a really big shift in on Monday night against Hull.

“Dan [Wallis] made a couple of great saves and the two centre halves have headed everything and defended really solidly.

“The midfielders and wide men worked their socks off to keep that clean sheet.

“We were hanging on a little bit at the end and we conceded a lot of possession to QPR.

“They had their chances but I think we earned that little bit of luck.”

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Hirst claimed the only in the third minute of yesterday’s encounter at Hillsborough. The England Under-18 international, who bagged a hat-trick against Hull, fired home after good work by trialist Michael Donohue.

Hirst should have added to his tally but a combination of poor finishing and good goalkeeping by Seny Dieng meant he had to settle for one.

“It was a great learning curve for Hirsty and the team,” said Thompson. “George kept putting himself in the positions to get the opportunities.

“On another day, his chances would have gone in. The main thing is we are making those chances.”

Wallis impressed for the Owls, making superb saves to deny Danny Rowe and Reece Grego-Cox late on. Centre-back Connor O’Grady also expertly cleared a Rowe shot off the line.

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