Match ends, Sheffield Wednesday 1, Aston Villa 0.
Aston Villa's first game in the second tier since 1988 ended in defeat as Fernando Forestieri's late goal gave Sheffield Wednesday victory in their Championship opener at Hillsborough.
Forestieri pounced on a poor clearance by Villa goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini to slot in an 85th-minute winner.
Roberto di Matteo's Villa improved as the game progressed after a slow start.
They looked on course for a point until Forestieri's intervention for last season's beaten play-off finalists.
Gollini had twice denied the Italian forward during the second period but was powerless to rectify his kicking error as Forestieri raced clear before finishing coolly into the corner of the net.
Jordan Ayew and Rudy Gestede both had headers saved and Ashley Westwood also drilled two long-range shots just wide as Villa, aiming to return to the Premier League at the first attempt under new boss Di Matteo, made a creditable but ultimately pointless start to life in the Championship.
Chances were scarce during a cagey first period, which was interrupted for five minutes while Owls debutant Steven Fletcher and Villa captain Tommy Elphick received treatment following a nasty clash of heads.
Scotland striker Fletcher required 10 stitches in a head wound and was unable to continue.
Villa's new £12m front man Ross McCormack was denied a debut goal by Tom Lees' last-ditch tackle shortly before his withdrawal after 77 minutes.
Sheffield Wednesday head coach Carlos Carvalhal told BBC Radio Sheffield: "We were fantastic in the first half and deserved to be ahead.
"Villa have a good team and they started playing more near our defence, who did some very good work.
"We gave a signal to everybody that we wanted to win by putting Atdhe Nuhiu up with Gary Hooper, and we scored the goal with a mistake because Gary pressed the goalkeeper. We deserved to win against a strong team in the competition."
Aston Villa boss Roberto di Matteo told BBC WM: "With 10 minutes to go, you're away from home against a good side, you'd like to see the game out. If you can't win it, don't lose it.
"Unfortunately it was an error from us that gave them the goal, but I thought that in the second half we were a very good team and had some excellent opportunities to score.
"It's very harsh for us to take because I'd like the opposition to do something special to score, rather than give them a goal.
"We have to learn from this situation - we've only been together for five weeks and you can see they've been together for a much longer time."
- 32HuntSubstituted forPalmerat 84'minutes
- 15LeesBooked at 45mins
- 23HutchinsonBooked at 30mins
- 33WallaceBooked at 45minsSubstituted forNuhiuat 67'minutes
- 6FletcherSubstituted forHooperat 27'minutes
- 19Lucas João
- 6ElphickBooked at 41mins
- 2BakerBooked at 66mins
- 7BacunaSubstituted forGreenat 86'minutes
- 22GardnerBooked at 45minsSubstituted forTshibolaat 70'minutes
- 10J Ayew
- 44McCormackSubstituted forGrealishat 77'minutes
- Steve Martin
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Sheffield Wednesday 1, Aston Villa 0.
Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Tommy Elphick.
Attempt missed. Barry Bannan (Sheffield Wednesday) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.
Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Andre Green.
Attempt blocked. Ashley Westwood (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Nathan Baker.
Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Sam Hutchinson.
Substitution, Aston Villa. Andre Green replaces Leandro Bacuna.
Goal! Sheffield Wednesday 1, Aston Villa 0. Fernando Forestieri (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal.
Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Liam Palmer replaces Jack Hunt.
Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Alan Hutton.
Foul by Jack Hunt (Sheffield Wednesday).
Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Jack Hunt.
Foul by Kieran Lee (Sheffield Wednesday).
Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt saved. Tom Lees (Sheffield Wednesday) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Barry Bannan with a cross.
Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Aaron Tshibola.
Substitution, Aston Villa. Jack Grealish replaces Ross McCormack.
Attempt missed. Jack Hunt (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box misses to the right. Assisted by Fernando Forestieri with a cross.