Match ends, Sheffield Wednesday 0, West Bromwich Albion 3.
Sheffield Wednesday 0-3 West Bromwich Albion: Charlie Austin & Matheus Pereira give Baggies win
West Bromwich Albion moved a point behind Championship leaders Leeds United after a comfortable victory at Sheffield Wednesday.
Charlie Austin's penalty eight minutes before the break set the Baggies on the way to their first win in five games, which lifted Slaven Bilic's side five points clear of third-placed Brentford.
Matheus Pereira glanced in Kieran Gibbs' cross to double the visitors' lead just before the hour mark.
Owls winger Kadeem Harris hit the post with a curling shot from 25 yards out soon afterwards, but Pereira smashed in a third from a narrow angle late on as Wednesday suffered a first defeat in three games.
The win was a timely one for West Brom, who headed into the game at Hillsborough having taken just one point from their two games since the season restarted on Saturday, 20 June.
With Brentford and fourth-placed Nottingham Forest both in form following the resumption, the Baggies were under pressure to get their automatic promotion bid back on track.
Wednesday started the brighter and were sharp in possession, yet did not make the most of their set-piece opportunities in the first half - with Connor Wickham heading into the side-netting from a corner.
Having gone four games without scoring, the visitors were given the perfect opportunity to end their struggles in front of goal when Moses Odubajo dragged Dara O'Shea down from Pereira's free-kick.
Austin sent Owls keeper Joe Wildsmith the wrong way and slotted into the bottom right-hand corner to end West Brom's 441-minute goal drought and notch his 10th goal of the season in all competitions.
The second goal came from a team move, with slick passing and good hold-up play from Callum Robinson setting up a crossing opportunity for left-back Gibbs, who found an unmarked Pereira eight yards out.
Wildsmith did well to deny Kamil Grosicki from close range after a defensive slip allowed the Poland international a sight at goal, but he could do little about Pereira's strike with five minutes left.
The hosts rarely troubled Albion keeper Sam Johnstone, although he was called into action in the final minute of stoppage time to punch away Jabob Murphy's fierce long-range drive.
The match was the Owls' first since reports emerged that some players have not been paid in full this month, and the South Yorkshire club are also awaiting the outcome of an English Football League hearing into a misconduct charge relating to the sale of their stadium to owner Dejphon Chansiri.
Wednesday were sixth in mid-January after winning at Leeds, but two victories in 13 league outings since then has left Garry Monk's side nine points off the play-offs with six games of the campaign remaining.
Sheffield Wednesday boss Garry Monk: "I think the first half was a missed opportunity for us. They looked a bit nervous, but we didn't quite take advantage of it.
"It is a very unfortunate scoreline. It was definitely not one we deserved.
"We gave it everything, but their freshness showed in the second half.
On reports some wages had not been paid in full: "All of that will be resolved and done properly.
"Everyone inside the camp were totally understanding of it.
"It has been explained to everyone. We know that is being resolved and is not an issue."
West Brom head coach Slaven Bilic: "I liked the performance. It was not easy to play that game.
"There was big pressure on us and we responded like a proper, mature, quality team and that's what I like about it.
"Everybody gave everything and that was expected. You can crumble under the pressure, but we didn't.
"I'm really proud of the guys. Hopefully we are back in town."
- 10BannanSubstituted forHuntat 87'minutes
- 21LuongoSubstituted forLeeat 62'minutes
- 7K Harris
- 20ReachSubstituted forNuhiuat 62'minutes
- 6RhodesSubstituted forDa Cruzat 45'minutes
- 38Da Cruz
- 27O'SheaBooked at 61mins
- 16HarperSubstituted forAjayiat 88'minutes
- 19SawyersBooked at 53mins
- 7KrovinovicSubstituted forRobson-Kanuat 69'minutes
- 12Costa PereiraBooked at 80minsSubstituted forLivermoreat 88'minutes
- 15AustinBooked at 66minsSubstituted forGrosickiat 69'minutes
- 29DianganaSubstituted forRobinsonat 55'minutes
- David Webb
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Sheffield Wednesday 0, West Bromwich Albion 3.
Attempt missed. Connor Wickham (Sheffield Wednesday) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left.
Attempt saved. Jacob Murphy (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Connor Wickham.
Attempt blocked. Connor Wickham (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Joe Wildsmith.
Foul by Ahmed Hegazi (West Bromwich Albion).
Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Attempt missed. Kieran Lee (Sheffield Wednesday) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jacob Murphy.
Foul by Hal Robson-Kanu (West Bromwich Albion).
Dominic Iorfa (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Dara O'Shea (West Bromwich Albion).
Kadeem Harris (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Dominic Iorfa.
Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Semi Ajayi replaces Rekeem Harper.
Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Jake Livermore replaces Matheus Pereira.
Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Alex Hunt replaces Barry Bannan.
Goal! Sheffield Wednesday 0, West Bromwich Albion 3. Matheus Pereira (West Bromwich Albion) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Kamil Grosicki.
Attempt blocked. Hal Robson-Kanu (West Bromwich Albion) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Kamil Grosicki.
Corner, Sheffield Wednesday. Conceded by Kieran Gibbs.
Attempt blocked. Connor Wickham (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Kieran Lee.