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Match Reports


21 October 2017

Strikes from Aaron Mooy and Laurent Depoitre handed Town a memorable victory over Jose Mourinho's Manchester United for the first time since the 1951/52 season on a wet afternoon at the John Smith's Stadium.

The Red Devils' last visited Kirklees in 1972, and the fixture culminated in David Wagner making three changes from last Saturday's defeat to Swansea. Danny Williams, Aaron Mooy (playing in the number 10 role) and Chris Löwe all made welcome returns to the starting XI, with Town receiving an extra boost in the shape of Steve Mounie proving his fitness to earn a spot amongst the substitutes.

Aaron Mooy and Elias Kachunga made their 50th respective league starts for the Club this afternoon, whereas Chris Löwe created his own personal milestone by making his 50th league appearance in West Yorkshire.

Town ensured that the contest began with an aggressive mentality; Jonathan Hogg in particular hunting red shirts in possession to allow no creativity time. However, that offensive threat gave Town a minor scare as Nemanja Matic's accurate through pass aiming for the large presence of Romelu Lukaku up front saw the latter's tame shot well held by Jonas Lössl.

Tempers frayed as the intensity heightened; Christopher Schindler providing substantial evidence to the notion of a frantic start by receiving an early yellow card for a challenge on Jesse Lingard.

The re-instated Danny Williams displayed superb energy to evade multiple challenges in the centre of the park before laying the ball to a waiting Tom Ince on the left-flank, playing advantage having been fouled in the build-up. Tom's resulting cross aimed for Elias Kachunga at the far post, but Ashley Young managed the situation well to nod safely back to a grateful David De Gea between the sticks for United.

Arguably the best chance of the whole game to that point eluded Laurent Depoitre 15 minutes in. Aaron Mooy's inch-perfect free-kick from the right begged to be headed home, but Town's summer capture from Porto agonisingly couldn't make an adequate connection to put Town ahead.

Spaniard Ander Herrera volleyed wide for the visitor after Ashley Young had shown a skilful touch to beat his marker and take aim for a queue of red shirts in and around the Terriers' penalty area.
Town's defensive ranks had minimal time to rest nonetheless as Jesse Lingard's persistent drive through the heart of the midfield resulted in the rebounded cross from Young being hooked wide by Lukaku, who had somehow drifted in between two blue and white shirts in a menacing attacking position.

After repelling United's small patch of pressure, the terraces of the John Smith's Stadium would be sent into unrivalled ecstacy thanks to Aaron Mooy. The Australian dispossed Juan Mata in the centre circle before bearing down on goal. Tom Ince provided able support down the left and weaved his way into a shooting position but fired straight at De Gea; that rebound fell graciously to Mooy who pounced with the deadliest of consequences to hand Town the advantage.

And just as Town fans' heartbeats returned to normal, that dream lead was doubled just 5 minutes later. Laurent Depoitre juggernauted past two United defenders before rounding a stricken De Gea to slot into an empty net. Jose Mourinho's men now had a huge mountain to climb if they were to leave HD1 with any sort of reward.

Nemanja Matic spurned an effort wide of the target in an attempt to reduce the arrears, but the interval arrived with Town firmly in command.

Impressive displays all around in the first half with exceptional energy and panache carried on into the opening exchanges of the second period. Goal-scorer of Town's second, Laurent Depoitre, continued to harry and hustle the visiting back-line by doggedly chasing down a clearance down the right-hand side to win an offensive throw-in.

On the defensive front, Jonas Lössl had to be alert in order to clear Mkhitaryan's dangerously in-swinging corner, but United still couldn't find the right combination to unlock a highly resilient Town door.

Jose Mourinho's half-time roll of the dice included an injection of pace with the addition of the lively Marcus Rashford. Luckily for Town, the England International blasted his initial attempt into the rocking Cowshed behind.

At the other end, one of Town's own replacements, Rajiv van La Parra, was unlucky to see his powerful, placed effort cannon back off a heroic red shirt which resulted in United scrambling the ball away to safety.

The game had really opened up and Town would have the linesman's flag on the Revell Ward stand side of the pitch to thank for keeping the lead at two, denying Armenian midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan the chance to roll an effort into the far corner.

Depoitre could've doubled his tally for the afternoon's proceedings after receiving possession from Danny Williams grounded pass after keeping the ball in play ahead of Victor Lindelof, but Town's Belgian striker couldn't manage to adjust his feet quick enough to possibly cause David De Gea any sort of trouble.

Laurent Depoitre deservedly left the field to a standing ovation and was replaced by the returning Steve Mounie- making his first Huddersfield Town appearance since picking up an injury in the trip to West Ham last month.

Jonas Lössl epitomised Town's defensive display in the 76th minute by reacting sharply to palm away Ander Herrera's glancing header as a result of Ashley Young's pinpoint cross.

However, Town Danish stopper couldn't manage to keep out Marcus Rashford's header at the far post from Romelu Lukaku's deep cross to create a nervy finish for all associated with Huddersfield Town.

Lukaku then looked to get on the scoresheet himself, but the talisman failed in his attempt to hit the target with a glancing header ahead of Chris Löwe.

Despite Town's deep block doing a sensational job to thwart all that United's persistence had to offer, Rajiv van La Parra was a mere inch away from having an open goal at his mercy after being sent on his way down the right flank towards the end. Only a recovering tackle from a red shirt halted that rapid progress which let the Red Devils off the hook.

Town's Dutch winger continued to ensure Town picked up three vital points, this time earning a corner after a positive surge into the area during the commencing of four nervy added on minutes.
The sell-out crowd were on their feet with nails firmly bitten right off as the Terriers masterfully negotiated a tough period of injury time. Although goals from Mooy and Depoitre turned out to be the pivotal moments of the match, Mathias Zanka has a case for block of the season as the Dane courageously made up a substantial amount of ground to block Chris Smalling's effort at the death from heading into the back of the net.

Zanka's block rounded off a highly charged period of events, leading to an almighty roar from the magnificent Town faithful which undoubtedly summed up the electric feeling of elation as Town notched another Premier League win to it's name with three vital points to boot.

Jonas Lössl; Chris Löwe, Christopher Schindler, Mathias Zanka, Tommy Smith (c); Danny Williams, Jonathan Hogg; Tom Ince (Scott Malone, 90'), Aaron Mooy, Elias Kachunga (Rajiv van La Parra, 39'); Laurent Depoitre (Steve Mounie, 69')

Joel Coleman, Martin Cranie, Florent Hadergjonaj, Abdelhamid Sabiri

24,169 (2,400 visiting supporters)

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