Match report: Braga 3 Sheffield Wednesday 1

Wednesday's players walk on to the pitch ahead of their clash with Braga.
Wednesday's players walk on to the pitch ahead of their clash with Braga.

Martin Taylor grabbed his second goal in as many friendlies as Sheffield Wednesday crashed to their first pre-season defeat.

The big centre-half, who netted in the Rodger Wylde testimonial versus Stockport County last week, headed in an inviting free-kick from Joe Mattock to give the Owls a 19th minute lead at the Estádio Municipal de Albufeira in Portugal.

But Wednesday, fielding two trialists in former Hull City defender Kamil Zayatte and Austrian winger Markus Grossinger, conceded three goals either side of half-time to lose their unbeaten record.

It was Dave Jones side who shaded the opening skirmishes. Taylor hit the inside of the post in the 17th minute after meeting Giles Coke’s corner with a powerful header, with Palmer’s follow up hacked away from near the goal line. TV replays suggested Palmer’s effort should have stood.

After Taylor’s opener, it took a superb last ditch challenge from David Prutton to prevent Custodio from pulling the trigger from 10 yards as Braga poured forward in search of an equaliser.

The Portuguese outfit turned the contest on its head, scoring two goals in as many minutes just before half-time. Edinho levelled things up, heading home from close range after Wednesday failed to deal with a corner. Braga then controversially took the lead through Pardo despite Mattock appearing to be fouled in the build up. An incensed Jones remonstrated with the match officials after the half-time whistle had been blown but his complaints fell on deaf ears.

Watched on by Hull City boss Steve Bruce, both sides made a number of changes after the break and clear-cut chances were at a premium.

However, with 16 minutes left, it was Braga who extended their lead as Pedro raced on to Baiano’s great centre before slamming a shot past Kirkland.

*Wednesday (4-4-2): Kirkland; Palmer, Taylor, Zayatte (Llera 85), Mattock (Floro 69); Grossinger (Corry 82), Prutton (McCabe 62) Coke (Semedo 62), Helan, Madine, J Johnson (Maguire 69). Unused substitutes: Davies, Gardner.

*The Star is making a donation to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice as part of an agreement with Sheffield Wednesday over our coverage of their pre-season matches in Portugal.