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Chris Maguire earns Stuart Gray's praise

1 February 2014

Sheffield Wednesday boss Stuart Gray praised match-winner Chris Maguire after the Owls beat nine-man Barnsley 1-0 in the Sky Bet Championship.

After Barnsley debutant Emmanuel Frimpong (31) and midfielder Jacob Mellis (88) received red cards, along with Wednesday substitute Jermaine Johnson (81), the game remained goalless with 90 minutes on the clock.

But Maguire struck in the fifth minute of stoppage time to win the game for the hosts at Hillsborough, drilling home following a Jose Semedo lay-off.

Gray said: "Chris just keeps going and going all game. He kept going and only had one thing on his mind for the winner, which was going for goal. He doesn't hide.

"There was some arguments about the amount of added time, but I think that came from Mellis' red card.

"He knows he has to keep going otherwise he would be out of the team, and that's what he does. Him and Liam Palmer down the right hand side were excellent today. They complement each other very well.

"I felt we rushed things in the build up when we were up against nine and 10 men but that's credit to Barnsley. We had a lot of possession but we didn't pepper the goal enough."

Benik Afobe made his debut for the Owls and Gray was quick to praise the striker, although he admitted he would like to further strengthen his forward line.

"It was a good debut from the boy, he's got goals in him," added Gray.

"I want to sign strikers but it looks like we will have to get a defender in on loan.

"(Kamil) Zayatte has suffered another injury setback which is unfortunate, and Glenn Loovens was touch and go today with his hamstring injury, but touch wood he'll be back for next Saturday."

In response to Barnsley midfielder Mellis' penalty claim, Gray said, "I don't want to get into a penalty argument because we don't get them."

Despite Gray's comments on the spot-kick claim, Barnsley manager Danny Wilson believed it was a penalty.

"We all feel aggrieved because we think that we've been denied a stonewall penalty," he said.

"I know we should have had a penalty but the bottom line is that we have lost and that's hard to take.

"We feel very aggrieved.

"I feel for the team as a whole because we were brilliant when we had 10 men.

"Mellis' red card was just stupidity but I think it was just frustration from the stonewall penalty being turned down.

"We could have won the game but instead we've lost it."

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