The Lancastrians threw the Sheffield minnows out of the Cup by what was considers ‘a simply goal’ by the ‘Sheffield Daily Telegraph,’ despite displaying a poor performance. And the manor in which the game was contested wasn’t that of which you would usually find in a Cup competition.
However the first half generated by Wednesday was of high order, only lacklustre finishing prevented the Yorkshire men from talking the lead, though can be proud of there fine defence in what was a bad whether game accompanied with wing and strong sun light.
The second half went sour – for Massey in particular, allowing a shot from Wood to slip under his legs as the Shakers scored the only goal of the game. Bury didn’t rest on their lead and attempted to double it whilst the Owls struggled to get past the powerful Bury defence as the Cup holders ran out triumphant winners.
The crowed watching the game in anticipation in what said to have been the largest crowed seen at Owlerton Stadium as the full capacity was packed to the rafters – with the 27,000 or so comfortable housed with Wednesday taking in gate receipts of £850.
With the evaporation of snow the pitch was quite understandably soft in the winter month but for the players’ was still in excellent condition.
The visitors were able to field a full casual team line-up which included Jasper McLuckie whilst Wednesday was forced to play the experienced Fred Spiksley in place of absent Harry Davis (ill).
The home side were made to start the game playing against the wind but Jack Pryce played against the conditions with a superb run down the flank, quickly passing to Spiksley whose shot just dipped over the crossbar.
Jocky Wright then made a mazy run on the opposite wing and in the process found himself tripped on the edge of the area. Thompson shot from the lay off which didn’t pay off, Sagar and Plant broke free for Bury and went on the attack and after McLuckie got back onside James Massey rushed out to prevent a Shakers goal by beating Plant to the ball.
Charles Sagar fired the ball towards goal before Massey could track back; fortunately Layton charged down the ball and went back into Wednesday possession – a lucky escape for Massey. The Owls looked like they had a goal in them with neat flicks from Pryce and good play from Wright and Spiksley.
Pryce shot wide of the mark, and when the ball flashed back across the goal mouth from Malloch the official blew offside. At this point the Wednesday was on top of Bury but the visitors found gaps in their defence. Jack Plant provided a timed cross into the centre, and during the confusion to follow Massey was allowed to pick up the ball and clear.
Wednesday found them in the Bury box, Wright did well to get up field, supported by Crawshaw he ended up applying a sweet volley from close range which Thompson managed to save. An onslaught on the goal followed; twice the goal looked gapping but Price got out numbered and Crawshaw ended up shooting wide at the angle.
The conditions were sweltering for the players and it showed as each side displayed frequent mistakes which wouldn’t usually occur. Little had been seen of Spiksley- who was considered as the owls’ main attack; nether the less they still found opportunity’s when Thompson charged down Wright’s attempt whilst supplied a second save from Pryce.
A free-kick was awarded after Bury committed a minor foul; but after a good pass to Spiksley, he corkscrewed into the middle, and when he looked odds on favourite to see the net bulge he was tackled – just six yards from goal.
With three minutes left of the first half the Owls stepped up a gear through the centre but McEwan cleared and worked an attack, Sagar was allowed to run past the defence from an offside position; Massey miss kicked the ball over the goal line – luckily it didn’t count and Wednesday were allowed to continue before the whistle blew for half-time.
Once play resumed it wasn’t long before the ball found its way into the Bury half; and try as they may the cup holders couldn’t find a way past the expected underdogs but they were putting a brave performance.
Wilson and Pryce combined to force them down the middle were Thompson was called upon again to rescue Bury. Whilst at the other end another dashing run, Wright got the best opening of then game so far but his shot was too eager and curled outside.
Sagar then broke away; Wood ran on and fired hard and low, the ball went tamely under keeper Massey, passing through his legs and into the net – Bury were finally in front, even if it wasn’t deserved with eight minutes gone in the second half.
This surged on Bury as they attempted to retain their trophy – before they were eventually knocked out against winners Tottenham Hotspur in the Quarter-Finals. The shakers gave Massey three shots to deal with; which he managed to prevent them from doubling their lead.
Wednesday tried but failed to brake down the defence which had been troubling them all afternoon, especially the in form Thompson. Pryce shot which just missed the top corner with Thompson obviously beaten; but opportunity’s were far and few between for the Owls.
Determined not to be beaten Crawshaw who had featured heavily in the game set the forwards going again but they finessed a lot too much, and on three occasions were swept off there feet. The determination was obvious to all but fatigue was low.
The only clear cut chance came to Wright, he burst through but lost his footing and Leeming once more booted out for a corner kick. Shots came from long range which Thompson handled despite dropping a few but none really troubled him much.
Bury then went on the attack but were soon beaten off the ball, Wright stood firm when he smashed in a 20 yard shot which only just fired over the bar with the aid of Thompson’s trusted hand. Thompson was again unbeatable when he kept out another two attempts.
The score could have gone to 2-0 when Wood ran in and shot a first time which Massey was fortunate to guide over his bar, at this point Langley was playing alongside the strikers whilst Langley was doing the donkey work at the back.
That appeared to be the final chance in a game which was duly controlled by the home side but were left to rule on missed chances.
Sheffield Wednesday: Massey, Layton, Langley, Ferrier, Crawshaw, Ruddlesdin, Spiksley, Pryce, Wilson, Wright, Malloch.
Bury: Thompson, Darroch, McEwan, Pray, Leeming, Rose, Richards, Wood (1), McLuckie, Sagar, Plant.
Referee: Mr. A G Kingscott (Derby)