Blackburn 2-2 Sheffield Wednesday: Sub Joao grabs late leveller
Last Updated: 28/11/15 10:04pm
Substitute Lucas Joao climbed off the bench to grab a late equaliser as Sheffield Wednesday secured a 2-2 draw at Blackburn Rovers in Paul Lambert's first home game in charge.
It looked as though Lambert would have a dream start at Ewood Park as Hope Akpan's first Rovers goal and a first of the season for Corry Evans gave Rovers a half-time lead despite Modou Sougou's strike briefly restoring parity.
However, Lambert's 100 per cent start to his Blackburn tenure came to an end when Joao headed home five minutes from the end - the fourth time he has done so as a substitute.
Despite the disappointment of losing the lead twice, Rovers brought an intensity that will encourage the home faithful and they stretched their unbeaten run to five games.
Wednesday remain well in contention for the top six and have lost just once in their last 14 games in all competitions.
Lambert brought in Chris Taylor for Tom Lawrence in the only change from last week's win at Preston while Carlos Carvalhal drafted Liam Palmer and Sougou into his first XI.
The new boss stressed the importance of playing at home with high tempo and intensity and he was rewarded with a dream start in the fifth minute as Craig Conway's cross was met by Akpan six yards out and his header gave Keiren Westwood no chance.
The visitors were being hassled and harried to the point that they hardly created a chance in the first half but with their first, in the 40th minute, they grabbed the equaliser.
A Westwood punt upfield was headed to Kieran Lee, who weaved past two defenders and coolly dummied Jason Steele to leave a tap -in, but although he hit the post, Sougou gobbled up the rebound.
Parity was short-lived though as another dangerous Conway corner was only partially cleared to Evans a minute from half-time and his 20-yard shot took a wicked deflection to wrong-foot Westwood and nestle in the corner.
Akpan tried his luck from outside the area early in the second half but rifled over, and although Wednesday improved after the break, chances were few and far between, with Fernando Forestieri dragging a shot wide.
Shane Duffy almost headed a third from a superb Conway delivery 62 minutes in but could not hit the target, and Gary Hooper missed a glorious chance 16 minutes from time when he latched on to a Joao flick-on but shot wide from 10 yards.
The dream start for Lambert was halted in the 85th minute, though, as a floated ball found Lee on the left and although he sliced his effort, Joao headed home from close range.
The goal was greeted angrily by the home faithful, whose captain Grant Hanley was down injured in the opposition area, but Wednesday played on and got their reward.