Match report from Darren Moore’s first match in charge at the John Smith’s Stadium
- Huddersfield Town 1-1 Ipswich Town
- Darren Moore takes charge of first home game as Manager
- Delano Burgzorg opener cancelled out by Brandon Williams
It what was likely Town’s most complete performance of the season to date, it was an unfortunate end for the Terriers after Delano Burgzorg’s opener was cancelled out late by Brandon Williams, denying Darren Moore his first win as Town Manager.
With the John Smith’s Stadium in brilliant voice from the off following a wonderful reception for our Miles For Marcus participants, Marcus Stewart himself and new Manager Darren Moore presiding over his first home game in charge, it was no surprise that the game started as quickly as it did.
Within the opening 10 minutes, Ipswich had a good chance through George Hirst who headed weakly into the awaiting arms of Lee Nicholls, with Yuta Nakayama also finding himself cautioned for a sliding challenge in which he took both the ball and man.
A brilliant atmosphere throughout the half with a sold out Ipswich Town away end more than playing their part in opposition to the home supporters, Ben Wiles unlocked the visitors’ defence on 15 minutes, sliding through Josh Koroma who’s side foot attempt was saved well by Hladky to his left, despite the ball almost dropping into the goal from a real height in freakish circumstances as a result, eventually bouncing out for a corner.
Town followed that attack up just two short minutes later with an even better one. Jack Rudoni was played through on the left and tried to pick out Delano Burgzorg at the far post with a fizzed ball across but the defence intervened at the last moment, with Koroma’s first time strike saved well by the goalkeeper again as the ball was desperately cleared.
Ipswich soon had their own man in the book, with Cameron Burgess cautioned for a late challenge on Michał Helik on the edge of the box, who had stuck out a long leg to get to a loose ball first. With both Sorba Thomas and Jack Rudoni over the dead ball, Thomas struck first hitting the wall, with Rudoni’s follow up on the volley flying well wide.
Creating another chance on the half hour mark, some typically robust work from Jonathan Hogg knocked a loose ball into the path of Josh Koroma around 30 yards away in a central area. Firing toward the bottom corner with a wonderful strike, Hladky didn’t look to have it covered as it bounced just wide of his upright.
Ipswich Town appealed strongly for a penalty in the 35th minute after Sorba Thomas tracked back and dispossessed Omari Hutchinson in the box, but the referee waved it away immediately. With some pushing and shoving in the aftermath as the sides discussed the decision, shall we say, both Thomas and Burns walked away with a yellow card each.
Town had two further chances before the referee called time on the half, with Jack Rudoni unable to control a volley following a cross from Josh Ruffels, before Delano Burgzorg forced Hladky into another good stop after he fired from range after good play from Sorba Thomas to break.
Town’s best first half performance of the season to date by some distance, the Terriers were unlucky to go into the break level after taking the game by the scruff of the neck to such a degree.
Coming out for the second half in a rain sodden John Smith’s Stadium, the away side made an immediate adjustment at full-back, with Manchester United loanee Brandon Williams coming on for Harry Clarke as Town remained unchanged.
Following a similar pattern to the first half, the initial incident of note in the second period was a late challenge from Omari Hutchinson on Yuta Nakayama – his second challenge of that nature of the game – but despite the referee having a long chat, there was no further action taken. It wouldn’t be long before the first booking of the half however, with Leif Davis cautioned for prematurely ending a wonderful break from Josh Koroma.
The away side’s first attack of the half came on the break through Hirst who was set away in the left channel, cutting inside and seeing his shot bounce wide via Pearson and Nicholls for a corner. Taken by Davis, it was cleared well by Sorba Thomas’ head.
Continuing his first half heroics, Hladky was soon put to the test again, with Josh Koroma making room as he cut inside for the quintessential Koroma effort curling across the goalkeeper. Getting two big hands to it, the Czech goalkeeper continued to thwart the Terriers’ many advances.
Breaking with real pace just after the hour mark, Town finally got the lead they deserved. With an initial attack by Wiles and Koroma breaking down, Nakayama picked up the ball and played Burgzorg in down the right channel, with the forward entering the box from the wing, cutting in and firing low with his right boot past the previously unbeatable goalkeeper!
No less than Town deserved, it was Burgzorg’s second goal for the Club and first at the John Smith’s Stadium – with the forward booked for his celebration after entering the Cowshed End.
Freshening things up on 72 minutes, Moore went to his bench for a triple change. Koroma, Hogg and Nakayama – who had been struggling – made way, with Kyle Hudlin, Rarmani Edmonds-Green and Ben Jackson coming on in their place in what appeared to be like-for-like amendments.
Jack Rudoni was denied from point blank distance in the 82nd minute in what could have otherwise sewn the contest up for Town, seconds before Lee Nicholls was forced into his own heroics, changing direction extremely late to get to a deflected strike.
Committing more men forward in the final exchanges as they looked for an equaliser, Town defended well in numbers but could do nothing to stop Brandon Williams levelling in the 87th minute after he followed up on a goalmouth scramble to head past Nicholls from an awkward angle.
A wonderful performance with lots to be encouraged by despite the late equaliser, both sides looked for a winner but cancelled each other out in the final exchanges as Town made it five games without defeat.
Town’s team vs Ipswich Town (3-5-2)
Nicholls; Pearson, Helik, Ruffels; Thomas (Lees 90+1’), Rudoni, Hogg (Edmonds-Green 72’), Wiles, Nakayama (Jackson 72’); Burgzorg (Harratt 90+1’), Koroma (Hudlin 72’)
Chris Maxwell; Brahima Diarra, Jaheim Headley, Tom Edwards