Click crest to navigate

Quick links   Home Diary Links Contents Fixtures E-mail Terrace Banter

Bradford survive

Pre-season tour
Gallen signs
Hornets sting Town
Owls shot down
Gray returns
Wijnhard crashes out
Worthington woe
Ayre departs
First home point
Bye Bye Brucie
New manager announced
Fans show anger
9 points to safety
First home win
Ndlovu at first sight
Town leap to safety
Macari wins award
More cup woe
Ndlovu joins Blades
Jamie jumps ship
Town hit rock bottom again
Morris' McApline move
Prodigal son returns
Biggest win
QPR doomed
Nearly there
The bitter end

Saturday 19th August.

In the end my heart ruled my head, and I decided to forego an afternoon decorating the spare room (it will get finished one day - honestly) and went to Hillsborough instead. I am pleased to say that this was one of my better decisions with Town winning an excellent game 3-2.

Town were under a reasonable amount of pressure for the first five minutes as the defence featuring Thomas Heary at right back took time to settle, and then almost out of the blue we were one up. A sublime defence splitting ball through from Dean Gorré found Martin Smith advancing towards the left side of the penalty area, then after cutting in towards goal he despatched a lovely left foot shot under the rotund Kevin Pressman. What joy! We could now implore Paul Jewell to cheer up while reminding him of who his previous employers were!

Within minutes of taking the lead Wednesday had an excellent chance to equalise following a free kick awarded just outside the penalty area but thankfully Andy Hinchcliffe's viciously struck place kick shaved the top of the crossbar with Nico Vaesen helpless. Having watched Town for so long there is always that nagging feeling that a one-goal lead is not enough, but on this occasion they actually increased their lead. After 35 minutes, Town foraged forward again, and a ball played across the edge of the penalty area by Clyde Wijnhard seemed to elude everyone except for Kevin Gallen who calmly drove in his first goal for his new club.

The weather was glorious again and Town were playing some electrifying football under the Sheffield sunshine as the front three of Wijnhard, Gallen and Smith gelled so well together with Dean Gorré back to his inspirational best in midfield. I could hardly contain my joy when we went three up just 4 minutes later when a Jamie Vincent free kick from wide on the right was deftly flicked in by a glancing Martin Smith header. This was easy!

As ever, we were unable to keep a clean sheet and in similar vein to last week's game against Watford it happened right on the stroke of half time. Sheffield Wednesday were awarded a free kick right on the edge of the area, although it was possibly a questionable award yet no surprise from the referee who had been a 'homer' all afternoon. Following his earlier effort from a similar range, Andy Hinchcliffe stepped up to take the kick and this time his venomous free kick was right on target but was brilliantly saved by Nico Vaesen, unfortunately, the ball went straight up in the air to be headed home by (guess who?) Andy Booth. More or less straight from the restart the referee blew for half time. At 3-0 up I think we could have won comfortably, but Sheffield Wednesday now had a lifeline and having lost Dean Gorré to a hamstring injury I was a bit twitchy.

During the interval Sheffield Wednesday reorganised with a double substitution as Michele di Piedi and Petter Rudi replacing Wim Jonk and Gilles de Bilde (all good Sheffield names) and the hosts looked a different proposition from the restart. Town were put under real pressure although this was exacerbated by the loss of Kevin Gallen (another hamstring, is there something wrong with the warm up routine?) and Martin Smith with an ankle knock. Reorganised Town defended stoutly with Jon Dyson tackling anything that moved in a blue and white shirt whilst Delroy Facey chased everything on a very hot energy-sapping afternoon, but the lead was cut further after 64 minutes.

It was difficult to see exactly what happened from the opposite end of the ground, however Nico Vaesen seemed to be desperately trying to make a grab for the ball, but ended up shoving Andy Booth inside the penalty area. The referee seemed to take an age lecturing Nico and it started to look as though he might be in for an early bath, especially if the ref. had listened to the home fans as he had done throughout the afternoon. Thankfully he only received a yellow card and returned to his goal to see Andy Hinchcliffe's penalty despatched hard and low to his left. Roll on full time.

As the match progressed we seemed to be under constant pressure, with Nico Vaesen pulling off a couple of super saves and the defence working manfully to hold onto the precarious lead as the away contingent anxiously monitored the clock on the electronic scoreboard. Little was seen of Town as an attacking force but the whole of the midfield and defence worked as a unit to limit the Owls to a handful of chances. All seemed as though it might be for nothing a couple of minutes from time when Ashley Westwood on loan from Bradford had an open goal at his mercy but as the footballing Gods smiles on the Terriers his shot grazed the post and out for a goalkick. Perhaps Bradford do love their near neighbours after all, or do they just feel sorry for us? Thankfully the defence and my nerves survived the onslaught and a few minutes later the referee brought an end to proceedings to allow the Town's fans to breathe again and 3 precious points to head up the A629.

The victory came with a cost though with injuries to Gallen, Smith and Gorré who were three of the most influential players in the first half and I just hope that none of these are going to be missing for long. It was great fun listening to Hallam Radio on the way home in the car and to hear all of the moaning Wednesday fans, especially the one who thought that Paul Jewell should be sacked after just two games in charge. Nice one!

Sheffield Wednesday 2 (Booth 45; Hinchcliffe 64 pen)

TOWN 3 (Smith 6, 39; Gallen 35)

Position in table - 10th

Town - Vaesen; Heary; Vincent; Armstrong; Lucketti; Holland; Gorré (Sellars 42); Irons (Baldry 83); Smith (Dyson 57); Wijnhard; Gallen (Facey 53). Subs not used - Margetson; Hay

Sheffield Wednesday - Pressman; Hinchcliffe; Jonk (Rudi 46); Grayson; Walker; Quinn; Booth; De Bilde (Di Piedi 46); O'Donnell; Cresswell (Sibon 74); Westwood; Subs not used -Hamshaw; Stringer.

Referee - P Robinson. Attendance 22,704



All words and thoughts by Chris except where stated.

A big thank you to Machala for putting up with me doing this and Ian for his support and my Mum for her proof reading.

If you enjoyed this site ... send me a message

If not - tell me