JAMES Henry’s stoppage-time strike gave Oxford United a famous victory over Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough.

The midfielder, who only started on the bench due to illness, poked home in the 93rd minute to secure a deserved win for the U’s on their first league visit to this historic ground in 30 years.

United’s pre-match build-up had been severely disrupted by two positive Covid tests, before traffic saw the visitors arrive just 45 minutes before kick-off.

But they were the better side for much of the Sky Bet League One clash, with Cameron Brannagan’s early strike putting them ahead.

Callum Paterson’s header 17 minutes from time looked to have preserved Wednesday’s unbeaten home record, but Henry struck in the dying moments as United claimed their first league away win of the season.

The U’s remain eighth in the table, but the psychological boost of these three points cannot be underestimated.

United’s preparation was far from ideal, but arriving late due to the traffic around Hillsborough was the least of their worries.

Gavin Whyte, Billy Bodin, Marcus McGuane and Henry have all been ill in recent days, with only the latter able to make the bench.

Karl Robinson revealed that two of the other three tested positive for Covid, while Mark Sykes, who has not been double-vaccinated, was ruled out through close contact.

It saw Anthony Forde start on the right wing in front of Sam Long, while Alex Gorrin returned in midfield and the fit-again Jordan Thorniley replaced Luke McNally at centre back.

Barry Bannan and Mide Shodipo came back into the Wednesday line-up, with Chey Dunkley and Marvin Johnson making it three former U’s in the XI.

The hosts had Sky Bet Championship quality running through their side, but United dampened any fears that their pre-match issues would affect them in the pouring rain.

Throughout the first half the U’s were full of energy, winning the second balls and getting forward at pace.

United’s first chance came after 12 minutes, when Brannagan played in Taylor to shoot just wide of the far post.

Within seconds, the U’s had won the ball back for the No 8 to net his second goal of the season.

Herbie Kane dispossessed Johnson on the right and fed Brannagan, whose shot skidded off the surface to beat Bailey Peacock-Farrell at his near post.

Wednesday looked ponderous, showing only flashes of quality, and the home crowd soon became agitated with misplaced passes and refereeing decisions that went against them.

The hosts’ first chance came after 20 minutes when Paterson latched onto Lee Gregory’s flick-on, but Thorniley did enough to make the striker shoot wide.

Long then fired a half-volley a yard too high, before Jack Stevens tipped over a similar effort from Bannan at the other end.

The game lost its flow around the half-hour mark, which did not help the home fans’ mood, as United continued to snuff out Wednesday attacks and looked threatening on the counter.

Liam Palmer’s shot was blocked by Thorniley six minutes before the break, before the Wednesday defence bundled Brannagan’s drilled cross away from danger.

The second half began at a frantic pace and United could have scored another within 35 seconds of the restart, but Peacock-Farrell made himself big to block Taylor’s effort from point-blank range.

Saido Berahino had replaced Gregory at the break and almost equalised a minute later, only to see his header from Barry Bannan’s floated cross pushed onto the post by Stevens.

Nathan Holland then did brilliantly to track back and block a Johnson effort at the far post, neatly illustrating the tenacity shown by United all afternoon.

Kane went down just before the hour mark, with Henry coming on in his place, before Darren Moore made his final two substitutes with a quarter of the game still to play.

Shodipo was replaced by Sylla Sow and Fisayo Dele-Bashiru came on for Lewis Wing, with Dan Agyei brought on for Taylor soon after.

The U’s were relatively comfortable, but Wednesday levelled with 17 minutes remaining.

Johnson dug out an excellent cross from the byline – the type we say many times from him in a United shirt – and Paterson headed past Stevens from close range.

Agyei’s downward header went over the crossbar moments later, but the U’s seemed happy to take their time as the clock ran down.

Ryan Williams replaced Forde on the right, before Long headed over in front of the United fans with four minutes left.

That looked like the U’s last chance, but Henry reacted quickest when Williams’s cross took a ricochet to poke home from six yards out.

There was still time for Stevens to push Bannan's long-range shot onto the crossbar in the dying seconds, but United held out for a deserved triumph.

Sheffield Wednesday (4-2-3-1): Peacock-Farrell, Palmer, Iorfa, Dunkley, Johnson, Adeniran, Wing (Dele-Bashiru 67), Bannan, Paterson, Shodipo (Sow 62), Gregory (Berahino 46).

Unused subs: Wildsmith, Hunt, Corbeanu, Brown.

Booked: Paterson.

Oxford United (4-3-3): Stevens, Long, Moore, Thorniley, Seddon, Kane (Henry 58), Gorrin, Brannagan, Forde (Williams 84), Taylor (Agyei 69), Holland.

Unused subs: Eastwood, Mousinho, McNally, Cooper.

Booked: Seddon, Gorrin.

Referee: Andy Haines (Tyne & Wear).