Goalless stalemate at the John Smith’s Stadium
- Huddersfield Town 0-0 Bristol City
- A point apiece after a game that was a real battle
- Town finish game with momentum in final 30 minutes
Neil Warnock’s Town side finished their latest Sky Bet Championship game against Bristol City with real momentum, but couldn’t find the goal to break the deadlock.
In the end, the Terriers had to be satisfied with a point and a first clean sheet in 2023 via their game-in-hand.
Town had to battle to keep the visitors at bay in the opening 45 minutes, with returning goalkeeper Tomáš Vaclík on top form, but were also unlucky not to be given a penalty.
Changes from Warnock changed the flow of the game and his side went the closest to breaking the deadlock, with an away defender needing to clear a Michał Helik effort off the line and Jack Rudoni going close.
Bristol City enjoyed the better chances in the opening 45 minutes, but not before Danny Ward was wiped out by goalkeeper Max O’Leary at the other end. The custodian did punch the ball away, but also clattered our forward at the same time after he had pressured defender Zak Vyner into an errant header. He completed the half, but the consequences of that challenge forced him off at the interval.
At the other end, Vaclík twice sprang from his line to beat former Town striker Nahki Wells and then Mark Sykes to through balls, before winger Sam Bell swept a cross from Tanner wide at the near post.
Tomas then turned a header from Sykes, from a Dasilva corner, around his post before making an even better stop from the second set piece, diving full length to his left to push Cameron Pring’s back post header wide.
The big penalty shout came in the final minute of normal first half time. Jack Rudoni won a 50-50 just inside the Bristol half and played a forward path into the path of Diarra, who entered the penalty area as full back Dasilva slid across his path – not winning the ball – and upended the Frenchman. However, referee Leigh Doughty waved the claims away.
Warnock brought on Martyn Waghorn and Josh Koroma for the second half and, after the hour, the men in blue and white started to enjoy the ascendancy.
The first big chance fell to substitute Koroma, playing on the right side. Diarra released a pass to the left for Waghorn, who moved it back across the pitch to Rudoni; he played Koroma into the area, but his low drive went inches wide of the far post.
Vaclík still needed to be alert at the other end, tipping over a backwards header from Hogg over his bar with 10 minutes left, but Town then enjoyed a good final 10 minutes without finding the breakthrough.
First Town broke away from that defensive corner, with Lees and Diarra combining to find Rudoni. However, his curling shot lacked power and was claimed by O’Leary.
Next Ben Jackson’s corner was cleared to the edge of the box for Rudoni again, but he fired over when in good space to take a shot.
The final chances came in added time, and were as close as Town came.
First Jackson’s deep corner delivery met the head of Lees, after which Helik managed to hook the ball across the face of goal – only for a defender to head it off the lune.
The ball was kept alive and fell to Rudoni on the edge of the box again. This time he struck a powerful low shot that hit the target, but O’Leary saved it with his legs in unorthodox fashion.
Town’s team (4-2-3-1)
Tomáš Vaclík; Matty Pearson, Tom Lees, Michał Helik, Josh Ruffels; Jonathan Hogg (c), Jack Rudoni; Joseph Hungbo (Josh Koroma, 46’), Brahima Diarra, Ben Jackson; Danny Ward (Martyn Waghorn, 46’)
Nicholas Bilokapic; David Kasumu, Rarmani Edmonds-Green, Etienne Camara, Tyreece Simpson
Ben Jackson (14’), Matty Pearson (26’), Jonathan Hogg (45+3’)