Sheffield Wednesday manager Stuart Gray felt his side’s better ‘composure’ was the difference as his side snatched a dramatic late winner to record a 2-1 win at Blackburn Rovers.
Kieran Lee’s close-range strike after two minutes was cancelled out by Alex Baptiste in a first half that saw Jordan Rhodes strike a post.
But Claude Dielna came off the bench in injury time and grabbed a winner with the last attack of the game when his 25-yard curling shot beat Jason Steele via a deflection.
It ended a run of six away games without a win and Gray felt that Wednesday’s first win at Ewood Park since 1999 is reward for their consistent performances.
He said: “I thought the first 20 minutes, we totally dominated it. Kieran Lee’s got his goal and we had two or three more opportunities where we got in behind them and then we stopped doing what was getting us our success.
“We allowed Blackburn to come into the game and then there was a 20-minute period in that second half where we’ve had to roll our sleeves up and dig in. They play to their strengths, get the ball into (Rudy) Gestede and play around there.
“But I thought we had a little more composure going forward. When Claude went on, it was to give us a bit more of an aerial defensive threat because we felt the ball was going forward a bit early.
“We had it done to us (a last-minute winner) at Millwall at home, it’s a horrible feeling and I feel for Gary (Bowyer, Blackburn boss) but I’ll take it. I believe these things will balance themselves out.
“I’m a great believer that the harder you work, it balances itself out for you. Performance-wise we’ve been playing well. I think that’s 20 games and only four defeats so it’s not a bad record.”
There was a lengthy stoppage in the first half after Lewis McGugan was clattered by Lee Williamson in an aerial challenge.
And Gray said: “He was knocked out completely. At the moment he’s a bit fragile but the medical side will look after that.
“He’s obviously come round but he was totally out of it for two or three minutes on the pitch. I think it was precautionary putting the (neck) brace on him.”
Wednesday’s win ended Blackburn’s nine-match unbeaten run that stretched back to September, and it is Rovers’ first defeat at Ewood Park since mid-September.
But Bowyer admitted his side were not good enough and offered no excuses for the ‘poor’ manner of the goals conceded.
He said: “It wasn’t a particularly good game and I thought the manner of the three goals matched the quality of the game. They were three poor, scrappy goals.
“But we have to now realise our level of performance wasn’t good enough. We know that, we’re honest enough.
“I didn’t think there was a great deal of quality in the game throughout. If I was sat here saying ‘it’s a fantastic strike’, fair play and you put your hands up but we’ve gifted the game to them with the manner of the goals they’ve scored.
“If you look at both goals, we haven’t done well for either of them.
“Through this fantastic run that we’ve had, we’ve stayed level with it and we’ll stay level again today. We just haven’t seen it out at the end. There’s a group of honest lads who are hugely disappointed.
“Over the last 32 games we’ve lost five so like I said we’re not going to press the panic buttons or anything like that. We try and stay level like we have done throughout this good run.”