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Page last updated at 17:16 GMT, Sunday, 4 May 2008 18:16 UK

Sheff Wed 4-1 Norwich

Brian Laws
Brian Laws was able to celebrate after a generally poor season

Sheffield Wednesday avoided relegation from the Championship with a handsome win over Norwich, despite conceding an early lead to the visitors.

Darren Huckerby's long-range shot gave Norwich the lead, but Wednesday hit back through a Deon Burton penalty.

Some poor Norwich defending allowed Ben Sahar to put Wednesday ahead, before the hosts added two more goals.

Bartosz Slusarski crossed for Burton's second goal, and Leon Clarke's left-footed shot wrapped up the points.

The final goal sparked wild celebrations at a sold-out Hillsborough as the Owls ended a wretched season on a high note - and Burton was the hero of the hour.

A crowd of 36,208, the biggest in the Championship this season, was a fitting send-off for the Owls and popular manager Brian Laws, whose side has been decimated by injury throughout the campaign.


Norwich made a stunning start to silence the Wednesday hordes, with Huckerby, who might not be at Carrow Road next season, combining with Dion Dublin in the eighth minute to slice open the home defence.

Norwich had chances to increase their lead, but out of the blue the Owls were handed a lifeline.

Burton and Jason Shackell challenged for a ball over the top and referee Mark Clattenburg had no hesitation in awarding a penalty when the Owls striker went tumbling just inside the box

Burton held his nerve to convert the penalty and Wednesday looked much more assured after the break.

Dublin was given a standing ovation to mark the end of his 20-year career when he was replaced by Jamie Cureton with 25 minutes left.

Norwich boss Glenn Roeder was full of praise for the departing 39-year-old.

"He's had a brilliant career, he's a top human being, and everything that Dion Dublin has got out of life so far he deserves," said Roeder. "Hopefully there's plenty of good times left for him in retirement."

  • Wednesday boss Brian Laws:
    "Under the circumstances, and I'm not patting myself on the back, but if Mourinho was here I don't think he could have done any better.

    "We've had everything thrown at us and yet everybody has stayed calm and very focused. We never threw in the towel."
    More Laws quotes

  • Norwich boss Glenn Roeder:
    "The players have been left in no doubt as to how angry I am.

    "Some of them need to look at themselves to see if they have a future here next year.

    "It was totally unacceptable. It was the Norwich I don't want and I won't have."

    Sheff Wed: Grant, Beevers, Wood, Johnson, Spurr, Watson (Kavanagh 55), Bolder, Songo'o (McAllister 55), Burton, Sahar (Clarke 82), Slusarski.

    Subs Not Used: Burch, Esajas.

    Booked: Johnson, McAllister.

    Goals: Burton 23 pen, Sahar 53, Burton 76, Clarke 87.

    Norwich: Marshall, Otsemobor (Pearce 73), Doherty, Shackell, Bertrand, Huckerby, Russell, Fotheringham, Pattison (Croft 59), Dublin (Cureton 66), Evans.

    Subs Not Used: Rudd, Chadwick.

    Goals: Huckerby 9.

    Att: 36,208

    Ref: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear).

    see also
    I'm just like Mourinho, says Laws
    04 May 08 |  Championship
    Sunday football as it happened
    04 May 08 |  Football
    Championship photos
    04 May 08 |  Football