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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
14:10 5th December 2009

LEEDS UNITED 2 HUDDERSFIELD TOWN 2

The Terriers played excellently at League leaders Leeds United to earn a good point in this typically passionate West Yorkshire derby at Elland Road, with strikers Lee Novak (pictured) and Jordan Rhodes netting for the Terriers.

Town more than matched their hosts, but had to come from behind on two occasions to earn the draw. Despite that fact, Lee Clark's side played some fantastic attacking football and went desperately close to grabbing all three points with a late Anthony Pilkington free-kick.

GOAL - Leeds scored the first goal of the game with their first attack inside the second minute through winger Robert Snodgrass. The Scotsman picked up a good pass in behind the Town midfield before spreading the play left to striker Vokes, but as he stepped inside to shoot Peltier pulled off a great block. However, the ball broke back to midfielder Kilkenny who pulled the trigger; Smithies couldn't hold onto his effort and the rebound fell straight to Snodgrass, who gleefully smashed the ball home at close range.

Town almost replied immediately when a low cross from Pilkington on the right fell to Rhodes fourteen yards out, but although his shot beat Ankergren the ball hammered the left-hand post and rebounded to safety.

The Terriers had responded well to going a goal behind and tried their luck again in the 6th minute. Kay picked up the ball in midfield and played a quick pass to Gary Roberts, but his shot from 25 yards out went wide of the near post.

A 10th minute corner led to the next half-chance for Town, but Kay directed his back post header wide of goal from Pilkington's excellent delivery with a number of defenders in close attendance.

Some neat passing play from Leeds down their right side gave striker Jermaine Beckford the opportunity to put a great cross into the Town box in the 14th minute, but fellow forward Vokes nodded the ball inches wide of Smithies' right-hand post.

BOOKING - Leeds left-back Tony Capaldi was correctly shown a yellow card by referee Jones in the 19th minute when he cynically stopped a Town counter-attack by scything down Anthony Pilkington.

BOOKING - Fellow full-back Jason Crowe followed him into the notebook just a minute later for a body check on Gary Roberts on the touchline.

The pace of Jermaine Beckford made Leeds a dangerous counter-attacking side, but Peter Clarke pulled off an excellent last ditch tackle to prevent one break ending in a goal in the 22nd minute after the striker tried to play in Howson. From the resulting Snodgrass corner, giant centre-back Michalik headed wide.

Town were having some real success down the left side - with the full-back booked, 'Robbo' was running with the ball at every available opportunity.

However, Smithies had to be alert at the other end and the young custodian did very well to smother a chance at the feet of Vokes in the 27th minute after some hesitant Town defending.

Peter Clarke tried an ambitious snapshot from almost thirty yards after robbing Beckford of the ball and advancing up the pitch, but his effort was easily collected by 'keeper Ankergren. At the other end Howson cut infield before powering the ball well wide soon after.

Pilkington showed real talent to use his first touch to go past the full-back in the 35th minute after Kay picked him out with a cross-field pass, but his shot was blocked behind by centre-back Bromby.

Collins flicked a Roberts cross into the hands of Ankergren just a minute later before a last ditch tackle from Michalik denied Jordan Rhodes a clear run at goal moments later.

A weak defensive header from Skarz in the 42nd minute presented Snodgrass with a chance to send an overhead kick towards goal - akin to Nathan Clarke's goal at Port Vale recently - but his effort went millimetres wide of Smithies' right-hand post.

Nathan Clarke's diagonal ball into the box with a minute of the half remaining fell to Jordan Rhodes, but as the striker looked to roll the ball home he was denied by a superb Leeds block. Town forced three consecutive corners in added time and in the final seconds, Novak's cross-come-shot fell to the feet of Rhodes - however, he couldn't divert the ball wide of the 'keeper from ten yards.

There was still time for Snodgrass to test Smithies with a curling shot, but the frenetic first-half ended with Leeds a goal ahead.

HALF-TIME: LEEDS UNITED 1 HUDDERSFIELD TOWN 0

The Terriers started on the front foot and it took a great block from Michalik to prevent an early Novak volley flying into the net.

GOAL - The Terriers did equalise in the 48th minute through Lee Novak's seventh goal of the season. The Terriers worked a short corner on the right between Collins and Roberts, with the latter delivering a cross into the box; the ball broke to Nathan Clarke at the near post and after the defender drove the ball across goal, Novak showed his poacher's instinct to tap the ball home at close range.

In just over a year, Novak had gone from playing in front of crowds of under a hundred for Newcastle Blue Star to scoring in front of a packed Elland Road!

Leeds came back on the attack and a determined run down the left from Snodgrass almost led to Beckford restoring the home side's lead, but Smithies smothered the ball in his six yard box.

Ankergren easily took in Kay's speculative header in the 53rd minute before Novak volleyed the midfielder's right wing cross wide of the near post three minutes later.

Beckford then got goal side of Peter Clarke to latch onto a great through ball, but the Town skipper could be grateful to his goalkeeper after Smithies blocked his shot and gathered the ball in.

SUB - Leeds changed Sam Vokes and Neil Kilkenny for popular Argentinean striker Luciano Becchio and winger Max Gradel in the 64th minute.

A cheeky back-heel from Novak in the right corner released Roberts into the box after the restart and he cleverly turned the ball back to Michael Collins, but the midfielder's placed effort was deflected wide by a defender. From the corner, Kay hit a spectacular overhead kick that Ankergren needed two attempts to save.

GOAL - Leeds restored their two goal lead with a route one goal in the 66th minute. A long ball in behind the Town defence bounced high into the box and Smithies was unable to claim the ball with Beckford close by; he could only push the ball left to substitute Max Gradel, who took one touch before hammering the ball past the two covering defenders on the line.

The Terriers continued to press and Rhodes put a very presentable chance from Roberts' corner wide at the near post just four minutes after the goal.

Substitute Becchio headed a good Snodgrass free-kick delivery over the bar a minute later.

BOOKING - Michael Collins received a yellow card in the 75th minute for protesting too much after the Terriers were denied what the travelling Town supporters felt was a clear handball in the Leeds penalty area. Pilkington's pacy cross certainly struck a Leeds defender at the near post, which prevented the ball from running to Rhodes.

GOAL - The Terriers equalised for the second time in the game in the 78th minute when Jordan Rhodes netted his 14th goal of the season. Town patiently built the passing move down the right side, with Nathan Clarke, Peltier and Roberts exchanging passes after a throw-in; 'Robbo' eventually chipped a deep cross into the box, where the former Ipswich man was unmarked to nod the ball past the helpless 'keeper from close range.

BOOKING - Anthony Pilkington picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in the 81st minute - after feeling aggrieved for not being awarded a free-kick himself after Snodgrass challenged him, the Town winger challenged midfielder Howson after the ball had gone.

SUB - Leeds made their final change in the 86th minute, with Hogan Ephraim replacing Snodgrass on the left wing.

Gary Roberts sent a deflected drive narrowly wide a minute later.

SUB - Theo Robinson was introduced to the game by Lee Clark in the 88th minute, replacing Jordan Rhodes.

Anthony Pilkington went desperately close to winning the game for Town in the final minute; after Nathan Clarke was fouled, he stepped up to send a trademark piledriver of a free-kick towards goal. The ball rattled the bar, smashed Ankergren on the back of the head before amazingly falling to safety.

FULL-TIME: LEEDS UNITED 2 HUDDERSFIELD TOWN 2

Town's Team (4-4-2):

Alex Smithies; Joe Skarz, Peter Clarke (c), Nathan Clarke, Lee Peltier; Gary Roberts, Antony Kay, Michael Collins, Anthony Pilkington; Lee Novak, Jordan Rhodes (Theo Robinson 88)

Unused Substitutes: Matt Glennon, Jim Goodwin, Robbie Williams, Andy Butler, James Berrett, Lionel Ainsworth

Town Bookings: Michael Collins (75), Anthony Pilkington (81)

Leeds Bookings: Tony Capaldi (19), Jason Crowe (20)

Attendance: 36,724

    Data provided by Press Association

    QUICK FACTS

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