Wednesday, 2 February 2011

My Match Report of Hull v Leeds

Attended the Yorkshire Derby last night and have written a match report for the Hull SU paper "Hullfire"

Tigers denied by Kasper in derby draw.
A capacity crowd at the KC stadium saw Hull City denied by a string of fine saves by Leeds United goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel in the Yorkshire Derby tonight.
  First half goals from Matty Fryatt and James Chester had seen City take a two goal lead but three top class saves from Schmeichel and a superb free kick from Robert Snodgrass ensured Leeds were well in the game at half time. David Somma equalised for Leeds with a strike from 25 yards soon after half time but neither side could find a winner.
  The game started slowly with neither side taking a strong hold in the match, the only chance fell to Hull’s Aaron McLean after 30 seconds who somehow headed over the bar from inside the 6 yard area. Hull, who included Cameron Stewart after he completed a permanent transfer from Manchester United on deadline day, began to take control midway through the first half but Robert Koren’s wayward shot was all they had to show. Leeds had gone close from two Bradley Johnson headers from corners down Hull’s right but produced a clear cut chance after 15 minutes, Luciano Becchio was teed up by Johnson after pinball in the penalty area and his hard shot was parried skyward by Brad Guzan in the Hull goal, the ball looked in danger of crossing the goaline as it dropped but Guzan got back to claim under pressure from Becchio and Max Gradel. The next 15 minutes preceded to be the Kasper Schmeichel show, first, Koren’s 30 yard half volley was dipping into the top right hand corner of the Leeds net until Schmeichel produced a superb one handed save to push the ball up and over for a Hull corner. Seconds later, Anthony Gerrard saw his header from an Andy Dawson corner tipped away by Schmeichel once again. On 25 minutes, a Corry Evans header was pushed away by the Leeds keeper as Hull looked to make their dominance count.
  Hull finally took the lead after 33 minutes, with City fans screaming for James Chester to spread the ball wide, the central defender, a recent signing from Manchester United strolled over the half way line before playing a delightful ball into McLean, Mclean took one touch before releasing Fryatt who rolled the ball past Schmeichel as the big Dane advanced. Seven minutes later and it was 2-0, Chester heading home from 6 yards from another Dawson corner. Leeds seemingly stunned by two goals in seven minutes upped the tempo, captain Johnny Howson booked for a late challenge on Evans. With half time looming, Snodgrass turned Gerrard inside out, and “Stevie G’s” cousin brought him down 19 yards outs, Gerrard received a booking and further punishment as Snodgrass curled the ball into the top corner to put Leeds back in the game at half time.
  The second half like the first started slowly with Leeds choosing not to come out all guns blazing and rather wait to create an opportunity. They were rewarded for this after 56 minutes when a long throw was cleared to the edge of the area for Somma to shoot home via the underside of the bar. The linesman’s flags confirmed the ball had crossed the line but Snodgrass hit the net anyway to ensure there was to be no doubt. Having thrown away the two goal lead, Hull boss Nigel Pearson went for a change in tactics, replacing James Harper with ex-England international Nick Barmby. Fans favourite Barmby joined Fryatt upfront with McLean moving out wide and former West Brom captain Robert Koren into the centre of midfield. Leeds despite having their tails up from the equaliser didn’t show any great desire to push for a third goal. In fact it was the home side that went closest to the winner as first Fryatt and then Gerrard saw their headers cleared off the line from combinations of Schmeichel and Gradel. Further introductions of academy graduate Jamie Devitt and debutant Tijani Belaid failed to unlock the Leeds defence and the game slowly petered out as Leeds made changes to ensure the point was safe, Sam, Paynter and McCormack replacing Somma, Gradel and Becchio. The home fans were on their feet for the final time in anticipation in the 88th minute as Koren’s through ball found Barmby but the veteran failed to control and the chance was gone. With stoppage time approaching, Liam Rosenior needed a long period of treatment after a challenge from a Leeds defender. Rosenior left the pitch on a stretcher going straight to hospital for an X-Ray. This left the now 10 men of Hull to see out 5 minutes but with Leeds seemingly happy with a point they did this with ease to match the 2-2 draw at Elland Road earlier in the season.

By Jack Shoemark at the KC Stadium.

Final Score: Hull City 2-2 Leeds United

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