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Mick McCarthy's Cardiff team stunned by five-goal defeat to Sheffield Wednesday

Three of the goals came in the first 23 minutes.

Image: PA

STRUGGLING SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY stunned play-off hopefuls Cardiff with a 5-0 win at Hillsborough to lift themselves off the foot of the Sky Bet Championship.

Three of the goals came in the first 23 minutes, with Julian Borner, Callum Paterson and Adam Reach all on target.

Jordan Rhodes added a fourth goal approaching the midway point in the second half, before Reach rounded off the scoring with his second of the match.

Wednesday, who had won just once in their previous 10 games, had slipped to the bottom of the table following Wycombe’s win at Rotherham earlier in the day. They are now six points from safety.

The result completed a miserable Easter for Mick McCarthy’s Cardiff, following their 1-0 defeat at home to Nottingham Forest on Good Friday.

Cardiff are now in 8th place and are eight points behind Reading who currently fill the last of the play-off spots.

Assistant manager Jamie Smith took charge of Wednesday in the absence of manager Darren Moore, who tested positive for Covid-19 last week.

The hosts took a fourth-minute lead when Barry Bannan’s corner was met by Borner, who headed past Dillon Phillips from the edge of the six-yard box.

Cardiff’s first effort on goal came from Will Vaulks, whose deflected long-range shot was easily gathered by goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith.

Cardiff skipper Aden Flint, who had a spell on loan with Wednesday earlier this season, also fired in a shot from distance which was comfortably saved by Wildsmith.

Paterson scored a fine 20th-minute goal to put Wednesday further ahead, meeting Liam Palmer’s cross with a superb first-time finish.

Reach added a third three minutes later, firing into the top right-hand corner of Phillips’ net after the ball was rolled into his path from a free-kick.

Rhodes then threatened to find a way through before Ciaron Brown made a vital interception to clear the ball.

In the opening minutes of the second half, Flint put a header wide after getting on the end of a free-kick from Joe Ralls.

Vaulks then fired a shot goalwards but it struck a defender, taking the pace out of the effort and allowing Wildsmith to claim the ball comfortably.

Rhodes made it 4-0 20 minutes into the second period after Bannan released Paterson on the right and his low cross was swept home by the striker.

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Cardiff threatened to pull a goal back in a goalmouth scramble but the Wednesday defence somehow got the ball clear.

Reach then scored his second of the match in the 69th minute following Josh Windass’s pull-back.

Cardiff boss Mick McCarthy made a triple substitution in the 72nd minute, with Jonny Williams, Leandro Bacuna and Kieffer Moore making way. They were replaced by Harry Wilson, Sheyi Ojo and Max Watters.

Wilson went close to scoring a late consolation when he burst into the right-hand side of the area and fired in a shot which struck a post.

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