Blackburn Rovers FC FA Carling Premiership
Game 6: Sunday 14 September 1997

Blackburn Rovers 3 - 4 Leeds United

(Half-time: 3 - 4)

Crowd: 21956
Referee: S W Dunn (Bristol)
Leeds United FC
 
« Aston Villa   Bristol City »

Match Facts
  Teams Unused Subs
Leeds Martyn, Kelly, Robertson, Radebe, Wetherall, Wallace, Hasselbaink (Lilley, 80), Hopkin, Halle, Kewell, Molenaar (Ribeiro, 45) Haaland, Bowyer, Beeney
Blackburn Rovers Flowers, Kenna, Hendry, Gallacher, Sutton, Dahlin, Wilcox (Duff, 72), Bohinen (Sherwood 72), Flitcroft, Valery (Andersson, 81), Henchoz Broomes, Fettis
  Scorers Other Info
Leeds Wallace 3, 17, Molenaar 6, Hopkin 23  
Blackburn Rovers Gallacher 8, Sutton 16, Dahlin 33  
  Yellow Cards Red Cards
Leeds Hopkin, Molenaar, Kewell, Robertson, Radebe, Hasselbaink Kewell
Blackburn Rovers Henchoz  

Match Statistics
  Leeds Blackburn Rovers
Corners won 3 4
Fouls committed 30 12
Hit woodwork 0 0
Offsides committed 3 3
Shirt numbers of goalscorers 8, 8, 12, 30 8, 9, 10
Yellow cards 6 1
Red cards 1 0

Match Reports
Fans' Reports
Martin Conway What a performance!
Voice of Football What a performance!
Dave Britton A trip to Ewood
Kev Lewis Cashburn impressions
Nif Blackburn
Newspaper/Newswire Reports
The Guardian Eccentric defending blows Blackburn's chance
The Times Leeds bar Rovers' return to top
The Electronic Telegraph Wallace serves up feast for Leeds
Links to Reports on the net
Soccernet Soccernet match report
Carlingnet Carlingnet match report

----------------------------------------------------------------------

What a performance! - Martin Conway

Just watched the best Leeds performance away from hoem that i have seen since the glory days of 1991/2 v Villa and Sheff Wed.

The start of this game was absoltely amazing, Leeds going 2 up after 6 mins through Wallace, and Molenaar. Blackburn then came back with one goal from a dodgy penalty decision, then back down the pitch and another super effort from Wallace - my man of the match, and also Sky's with 52 % of votes cast - and another goal from Hopkin his first for us.

The overall performance of the side, was tremedous and the pace of Wallace and Hasselbank looked a great prospect up front. We were suspect at the back at times, with Molenaar looking at sea at times.

Still the spirit was glorious, hope we can repeat it against Leicester, Saints and then the game i will attend v Scum.

Here are my ratings then

Martyn 7 - not at fault for any goals, sound second half.
Halle 7 - consistent on right back side
Wetherall 8 - great performance marking Sutton second half, and good first half
Molenaar 6 - looked suspect, scored a cracker ( intentional ?)
Roberston 7 - improved performance. linked up well with Kewell up the left
Kelly 7 - at industrious best here, and headed effort led to first goal
Hopkin 9 - what a performance from this great Captain, looks really promising for us
Radebe 8 - just a typical super performance from Lucas, really needed it in 2nd half
Kewell 8 - what a star he could be, pity about the ludicrous sending off. set up first
Wallace 10 - Star player, great 2nd goal, and looked dangerous all the time !
Jimmy 7 - did well for Hopkin's goal, played well, caused problems for Hendry

So are we now coming good ? I hope so, please can we have the same spirit and commitment for the rest of the season and we will go up the league table.

Referee - a disgrace, sending off Kewell was criminal, awful decision.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

What a performance - Voice of Football

I'm amazed by this! I was at a mates house and he had the footy on (pure coincidence - I didn't know he'd sold his soul for a satellite dish), but from what I could see, apart from 2 tremendous goals and a strange one, we tended to be a bit all-over-the-shop. Admittedly, it's pretty hard to tell from watching TV (I await a proper eyewitnessaccount).

Molenaar looked total bobbins! Robertson little better (praise the lord Ripley wasn't playing), and Hasselbaink pretty ineffective (although he superbly made the last goal). Ribeiro was anonymous, Kelly is not a right winger, Halle clearly shoved Dahlin? over for a blatant penalty that wasn't given (as did Molenaar) and the second half was just boring long ball stuff.

Radebe & Wetherall looked solid, Kewell was good, but if I were GG I'd throw the book at the stupid little cunt. What was he thinking about with his petty display of gamesmanship? He was near to walking before that too and could have cost us the match. Hopkin looked OK (gruesome actually!), but Wallace...he was just electric!!! Eat your words Rev Lee.

The ref was crap, but I'd be more unhappy if I were a Blackburn fan after he let those two penalties go!!!

All-in-all, a mediocre performance with the odd flash of brilliance, huge slices of luck and an amazing first 30 mins. If it's the best we've been on telly since 91/92, I must have dreamt about Stuttgart (x2), the Scum (x2), Bolton, Monaco, the Arse etc etc

By thunder, Hopkins is an ugly bugger tho.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

A trip to Ewood - Dave Britton

Getting on a bus from Manchester, hung over from a night out at the Conti, I was somewhat concerned about how Leeds were going to fair. I figured that we were up for a hammering, but at least it'd keep Scum from staying top. My day had been planned around a few pints in Blackburn, finding a Moorhouse pub and getting in some Witches Brew, only things went awry when other Leeds fans got onboard said bus with news of a pub next to the ground which was friendly to away sorts.

Looking outside the pub, there were three blokes all built like this bloke I met in Wigan the other week who came up to us with a spade and said 'wrggh uurggh wrgh?' at us for walking down the street. I had contemplated going back with a gun to sort him out, but as they only carry six bullets it may just have pissed him off and got him *really* angry, so I entered the pub with some trepadation, but once inside, you were greated by a sea of white, yellow and yellow/blue tops. It were like the Peacock had been hoisted over to accomodate the fans. 8 pints fer breakfast did nowt to help me hangover, but my saviour also came at the bar: they sold Seabrook crisps! Trying not to eat too many, as I was saving mesen for the world-famous Blackburn pie, I was devastated once in the ground to have an over-cooked, sunken effort. Having had to eat a soaking pie at Bury on Friday, I'd been building mesen up for this, and I was well disappointed. This gave us even greater doubts about how Leeds would leck, as the day seemed to be going pair-shaped.

A minutes silence was held, which was just about observed, so I figure there's at least some good press for Leeds fans, then kick-off, and before I knew what was happening, Leeds were 2-0 up. Right at the other end of the pitch, though, so no one knew who'd scored, no one knew what was happening, but a sense of euphoria gripped the Leeds fans. The other half of the Leeds list then showed up, fuming at missing 2 goals, and during the conversation I completly missed that Blackburn had pulled one back. Still, the Leeds fans carried on unabaited, choosing not to sit down on seats that had suprisingly adequate leg room. The goal frenzy continued as they were awarded a penalty for clearly no reason, which then started the ref on a roll of making sure Leeds head the fair-play league. The Leeds fans were roused to shout 'Penalty!' every time a Blackburn player fell over, along with the usual abuse at incompetant refs, along with chants of 'Boring, boring Leeds' once we'd got our third or fourth. Dismay surrounded the Leeds fans, both at us scoring and the incompetance of the ref, but it didn't matter, everyone just made the most of it.

Half time came, and a sizeable chunk of the crowd disappeared for a piss, pie and pint, leaving a half-hearted attempt at WATC-COE, but it did extend for the full fifteen minutes.

Second half came, and I think Leeds had been told to sit back and play it safe, as clearly 7 goals in a first half means that you don't need to worry no more. I guess that it'll've been a bit toss on the tele, but the fans more than made up for what was happening on the field. Nowt else mattered; we'd got four, so even Elle would've been a grand spectacle.. More dubious decissions by the ref lead to Kewell being sent off, who'd once again being playing his heart out.

'Go, time to goŠ' made a re-appearance from Hillsborough towards the end, with final chants of 'We only had ten menŠ' and 'You only had twelve menŠ' as the teams left.

Not much of a report, I'll leave that to someone with more info off the tele, but as well as Kewell, Wallace and Hopkin looked keen. Lilley came on towards the end, but didn't get a chance to do owt.

Still, it more than made up for that drudgery at Villa Park t'other week, but can this form last, as I came away from Hillsborough with a similar air of confidence?

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Cashburn Impressions - Kev Lewis

A disconnected set of impressions.

Wetherall and Radebe confirmed what I thought after the Arse match, that they are the best Centre-Back partnership we have.

Not convinced by the full backs. Halle seems composed and has good positional sense, but is not entirely convincing. Take the best points of him and Kelly, and you'd have a very good right back. Robertson seems to be 5 yards to far forward all the time, giving the center back nearest to him, a lot to do. You can't see the overall shape of the defence from the telly, but Robertson does not seem to track back to the far post when the Centre backs get drawn accross. (Something that always impressed me about Sterland).

The midfield and forwards seem better suited to playing away. Kewell and Kelly are good at providing much-needed help to the full-backs, but I would rather see a more attacking player in one of the flank positions, especially at home.

Perhaps Kewell will be given a go at left back with Sharpe/Ribiero in front of him. Hopkin, Ribiero and Bowyer all seem to want to get forward. I don't think we can move Radebe out of the back 4, Haaland is a holding player, but is he worth a starting place?

Up front Jimmy and the plonker looked the business. They get more space away from home and can manoeuvre clumsy centre-backs out of position. In home games they get crowded out, and the lack of a real winger in the team at the moment gives them little chance in the air from the angle the ball comes in.

The game against Leicester, a well organised 3-man defence, with players who will be willing to track Jimmy and Wallace right accross the pitch knowing they have a spare man to cover the gaps will in some ways be harder for them.

GG tends to play against 5-3-2 by emulating it. I'd like to see him exposing their wing-backs, by pushing our full backs onto them and creating 2 v 1 situations on the flanks.

Still i'm pretty happy after yesterday, that win sort of makes up for the defeat by Palace.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Blackburn - Nif

Last season Sky matches were followed by a deluge of (armchair) match reports and player ratings. What's happened this week? So, I'll have a go.

Had a day off on Mon, great to send them a weareleeds fax, and today to needle our (newcastle) boss. Who's boring then?

Sorry DRB, though I echo your sentiments (and usually do) let me start with a moan.

Agreed Molenaar was a bit of a liability, I know well that to mark a guy who's faster & more agile requires sitting on him and as much pushing and holding as possible. I get away with it (sometimes) being small and not in the Premiership. What a difference Lucas made, Dahlin didn't get a sniff, and he wasn't being manmarked either.

Long Hoofs

I actually thought we played a number of intelligent long _passes_ out to the flanks which Harry, Jimmy and Rodney made good use of. I'm still worried that the short ball is rarely an option as there seems to be a lack of players making themselves available (bring back Batty & Gordon). Except that is, in defence, where our desire (first half) to play our way out of danger terrifies me.

2nd half

No probs. Never felt they were going to get back, even when it was down to 10 v 12.

Midfield

Strange that TV doesn't show the midfield work as Steve said. From my armchair, Hopkin and Bruno were almost completely anonymous. Why is that?

Rodney

I've had a premonition he'd come good again this season in the way he was alongside Chapman. Keep it up!

Bench

I'm more impressed with our bench than I've been for a while. How good is Haaland? What's up with Bowyer?

Weatherall

didn't realise he was a 'hardman' his lips read one more fucking time to Sutton. Did he do him?

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Eccentric defending blows Blackburn's chance - David Lacey

Copy from Football Guardian of 15/09/1997.
Read the full report in The Football Guardian

Blackburn Rovers' hopes of resuming the game of leapfrog with Manchester United at the top of the Premier League which eventually brought the championship to Ewood Park three seasons ago were stalled yesterday when they lost a frenetic bout of snakes and ladders to Leeds United.

For the second time this season Ewood found itself knee-deep in goals, all seven arriving in the opening 32 minutes. Three weeks earlier Blackburn had led Sheffield Wednesday 5-1 at half-time and gone on to win 7-2. Yesterday Leeds, having established a 4-3 lead, organised themselves better defensively in the second half and especially during the last 12 minutes after Harry Kewell, their 18-year-old Australian winger, had been sent off.

© Guardian Media Group plc

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Jon Abbott (jon@leeds-fans.org.uk). Last modified $Date: 2003/07/20 11:09:22 $.