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Leeds United

FA Cup
Round 3: Saturday 6 January 2001

Leeds United 1 - 0 Barnsley
(Half-time: 1 - 0)
Crowd: 32386
Referee: G Poll (Tring)
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Match Facts
Leeds United Team Barnsley
Paul Robinson   Kevin Miller
Danny Mills   Janne Salli
Rio Ferdinand   Brian O'Callaghan Booked - 54 minutes
Dominic Matteo   Chris Morgan Subbed - 75 minutes
Lucas Radebe   Chris Barker
Olivier Dacourt   Steve Chettle
Eirik Bakke   Matty Appleby Subbed - 45 minutes
David Batty   Mitch Ward Booked - 12 minutes Subbed - 29 minutes
Subbed - 86 minutes Robbie Keane   Alex Neil
Alan Smith   Neil Shipperley
Goal - 9 minutes Mark Viduka   Mike Sheron
Nigel Martyn   Mateo Corbo Sub - 75 minutes
Ian Harte   Sean McClare Sub - 29 minutes
Jonathan Woodgate   Lee Jones
Jacob Burns   Martin Bullock
Sub - 86 minutes Jason Wilcox   Bruce Dyer Sub - 46 minutes
Match Reports
Ed Watkinson Match report
stotty Leeds v Barnsley - Match Report
BBC Leeds struggle past cheeky Barnsley
The Guardian Leeds come through a desert
The Independent Robinson keeps out lost boys
The Observer Viduka offers home comfort Viduka steals the show
Soccernet O'Leary grateful as Leeds stagger through
The Sporting Life Leeds United 1 - 0 Barnsley
The Sunday Times Lacklustre Leeds fail to convince
The Electronic Telegraph Leeds blushes spared by Viduka's early goal
The Times Viduka drives Leeds in their moment of need
Yorkshire Evening Post Viduka steps in to see Leeds through

The Times, Sunday Times and Telegraph now seem to require registration to view articles on their sites, with the Times and Sunday Times charging readers outside the UK. The Times/Sunday Times has also moved some of the older articles into an archive which requires separate registration and requires you to pay to access the content. The Independent now charges for access to articles more than a week old.

Match report - Ed Watkinson

Here goes with the view from the grass roots....

Actually, the view we had - Family Stand, only 3 rows from touchline - was OK for the first half but poor for the second. (Too much like being in the dugout, no wonder DO'L hasn't a clue !!!!)

I could hardly hear a bloody thing either as we were pretty close to the "Barns-el-ey" fans, who did themselves proud (I only heard the Kop once or twice - did we manage a reply to their "You're just a small town near Bradford" ?!?)

Anyway, there's not much to add to the other reports -

* Smith should have scored early on; as someone said it was an easier chance than his Lazio goal

* good goal (looked VERY good but the TV showed the defender's error on Mills' through ball (S. Times said Ferdinand's through ball !))

* at the time I thought Bakke's second half miss (where he had too much time to think) was horrendous, but for whatever reason it didn't make the Sky highlights Sunday morning

We'd better play 4-4-2 against Man. City, and win, otherwise the coming relegation battle will distract us from our glamour games against Lazio, Liverpool, and Real Madrid....


Robbo 7 - Did what he had to do well enough

Mills 6 - His through ball to Bakke for the goal turned out to have been lucky (but if he hadn't tried it....?)
Ferdinand 7 - Surprisingly (given we only had 3 midfielders) didn't bring it out of defence much; generally OK
Radebe 6 - Not a good game but did have to cover quite a bit for....
Matteo 5 - Likes to get forward - and Dacourt seemed to welcome the support - but a bit of a liability in an experimental 4-3-3

Bakke 6 - Pretty good work in general, set up goal well, but missed two chances he would probably have scored from last season
Batty 9 - Excellent, and better to come as he gets fitter no doubt. I even thought I saw him head it once in the head-tennis games. If only he would shoot sometimes ! (In that respect we missed Bowyer badly)
Dacourt 7 - Much better in the first half than the second; rather wasted in a wide position

Keane 7 - Good in the first half despite the chip over the bar, poor in the second. Particularly guilty of jumping too early for headers when the ball was hoofed up to him. Taking him off with 4 minutes to go was laughable, given the worse performances of the other two "strikers"....
Viduka 6 (the lowest mark you can give the scorer of the only goal) - Scored in the first half, totally absent in the second half. Should have been running around more throughout as it was bloody freezing
Smith 5 - Poor in the first half, totally absent in the second half. Should have been substituted at half time with Burns or Wilcox (or even Harte) coming on for a reversion to 4-4-2.

Wilcox ? - A long way away across a crowded pitch, on for 4 minutes (what's the point ????), so I can't honestly say I saw him do anything.

Ref 9 - Several people around us were fearing the worst when we saw Graham Poll warming up but in the event he booked 3 of theirs, including one for diving, and none of ours (neither Batty NOR Smith !!!! Although Smith wasn't really trying.)

Home crowd 1 - A ground full of Vidukas. Nobody can be bothered even though singing and clapping are good for the circulation !!!

Away fans 10 - A reminder of how enjoyable it is to visit clubs we despise (Spurs being the best example), outsing them, and taunt their crap fans. As someone said, the priority for most people at ER appears to be to "get away before the rush". (How that added to my mirth when LeeBowya scored against A.C. Milan.) On Saturday, the "Time to go...." song would have been very appropriate - from the Barnsley end.

Leeds v Barnsley - Match Report - stotty

F.A.Cup 3rd round weekend is always special. The Big Boys enter. The romance. The upsets. The heartbreak. Enduring images of Ronnie Radford's belly as he celebrates in his 2-sizes-too-small shirt, Peterborough away - Rochdale whites smashing up the pub in Stamford, The Centenary cup final...Jones - McNab only half stopping him - CLARKE ! ONE NIL !

It makes the hairs on the palms of your hand stand up.

There's a very, very dull theory going about that says that in a year ending in "1" Tottenham always win the FA Cup. Chaz and Dave dust off the banjos.

Well I have my own theory - In years ending in "972" Leeds always win the Cup.

So in 971 years time, in front of 8 billion fans in the all-new levitating stadium on the Moon, Leeds will win the famous trophy again.

Read the rest...

Leeds come through a desert - Dave Alexander

Copy from Football Unlimited of 08/01/2001.

There were a few raised eyebrows when Robbie Keane agreed to be repatriated from Italy as Leeds seemed to have an abundance of quality strikers. But the statistics do not bear this out.

Leeds are not scoring enough goals and, as a result, the pressure is on the Irish striker to come up with the goods.

If they do not start to come up with goals quickly, Leeds will not qualify for Europe again next season after a 12-month period in which more than £35m will have been invested in players, with an additional £13m due on Keane in the summer.

Read the rest...

Robinson keeps out lost boys - Phil Andrews

Copy from The Independent of 07/01/2001.

Leeds may have pulled rank on their Yorkshire neighbours, as expected, but their problems on the domestic front refuse to go away.

After taking an early lead and dominating the first half, they allowed Barnsley to mount a late rally in which only goalkeeper Paul Robinson stood between them and an embarrassing replay at Oakwell.

It does not augur well for their chances of lifting the FA Cup, which now represents their mostly likely route back to Europe, the only arena in which they currently appear capable of flourishing.

Barnsley may be mid-table in the First Division, but the problems that have stalked Leeds in the Premiership almost allowed them to bridge the gap.

Leeds' manager, David O'Leary, said: "I said at half time that one goal was not enough and in the second half we became a very nervous team. But the objective is to get into the next round and not make the headlines as a shock, and we have done that."

But it was a close thing. The Tykes were outplayed in the first half but as Leeds' failure to build on their early goal gradually sapped their confidence, so Barnsley's belief that they could steal at least a draw increased.

Robinson had been virtually unemployed for an hour when Bruce Dyer, whose arrival as a second-half substitute added some bite to Barnsley's attack, got in his side's first shot. The goalkeeper had to dive smartly to his right to make the save, and it became the first of many as Leeds' long suffering fans grew restive as they watched their teamhanging on.

In the closing minutes Robinson saved twice from Alex Neil, after Rio Ferdinand had justified another slice of his transfer free by whipping the ball off Dyer's toes with the striker poised to score.

Yet it had all looked so easy for the Premiership side when they coasted into an inevitable-looking lead after only nine minutes. Mark Viduka had already missed two good chances when Chris Morgan failed to intercept a through ball to Eirik Bakke, who cut into the box and slipped the ball to the unmarked Australian, who scored with ease from the edge of the six-yard area.

But for the profligacy of Leeds' three-man attack, in which Robbie Keane was particularly culpable, and some outstanding goalkeeping by Barnsley's Kevin Miller the match would have been wrapped up before the interval.

With David Batty looking like his old self in midfield after his long injury lay-off and Bakke surging forward at every opportunity in support of his strikers, Leeds did not look as though they would miss their principal play-maker, Lee Bowyer, who was missing through suspension.

And with Barnsley lacking their most creative player, the on-loan Stuart Ripley, because of Southampton's reluctance to allow him to be cup-tied, it looked as though this Yorkshire derby would go the way of the last cup encounter between these teams at Elland Road, when Leeds won 4-0.

Then Barnsley's caretaker manager Eric Winstanley decided to take a leaf out of Leeds' book by bringing on Dyer as a third striker, a decision which gradually shifted the balance of power. "We didn't get the result we deserved,'' said Winstanley. "We could have got an equaliser. Once or twice we were just a hair's breadth away."

But the manner in which his players failed will have done no harm to his chances of his tenure being made permanent when Barnsley choose the successor to Dave Bassett this week.

The report used to be available online here.

Viduka offers home comfort - Dick Noonan

Copy from Football Unlimited of 07/01/2001.

Leeds moved into the fourth round of the FA Cup, but a Mark Viduka goal was all that separated David O'Leary's stuttering side from another embarrassing result at home.

O'Leary had demanded a command performance from his talented side, but also a hatful of goals to boost confidence and spirits in the Elland Road camp. Ultimately, though, Leeds again failed to convince.

'We are looking a team that is burdened by expectancy' a relieved O'Leary said afterwards. 'We are a good side, but one which is under-performing after setting ourselves such high standards.

Read the rest...

Viduka steps in to see Leeds through - Phil Rostron

Copy from Yorkshire Evening Post of 08/01/2001.

EVERY team going all the way to FA Cup final glory needs a stroke of good fortune along the way.

So if that's really the case, all roads could well lead to Cardiff's Millennium Stadium for Leeds United as Lady Luck smiled on them against Barnsley on Saturday.

Mark Viduka grabbed the crucial goal and Paul Robinson produced a series of fine second half saves on a day when the rub of the green was with United as Barnsley were given the chop - just.

There was agony aplenty for the Tykes as United went through to round four despite a second half display which left much to be desired.

They were lucky to escape the prospect of an Oakwell replay but that shouldn't have been the case after a first 45 minutes which clinically illustrated the gulf between Premiership and Nationwide League.

With Leeds in the middle of a dreadful domestic run, the battle with Barnsley was seen as the perfect opportunity to restore some confidence.

However, it took Viduka's gem of a strike to settle the tie and the relief for United was palpable when referee Graham Poll called time on proceedings.

"In any cup game, the objective is to get through to the next round and we have done that," said United manager David O'Leary.

So United achieved that goal - but only just as their recent week frailties were often exposed in the second half by the spirited Tykes, who belied a run which has yielded just four goals since Bonfire Night.

But the opening exchanges gave little indication of the fun and games to follow as Leeds threatened to run riot against Barnsley who gave a good impression of rabbits caught in car headlights on their visit to the big city.

Quite how they survived United's early onslaught defies logic.

Keeper Kevin Miller produced a splendid stop from Alan Smith in the sixth minute after Barnsley were sliced open by great interplay between the young striker and Robbie Keane.

And Viduka was an ace away from a splendid goal after a magical moment of mesmeric skill in the corner of the area. The Australian flicked the ball over his shoulder before volleying just wide of the stranded Miller.

That piece of silky skill deserved a goal - but United didn't have to wait long for the opener.

David Batty's delicious cross-field ball found Danny Mills on the right. He took a couple of strides before projecting a pass forward towards Eirik Bakke.

Matty Appleby should have cut it out but it found Bakke who stormed on before crossing to Viduka who couldn't miss from eight yards.

That was the catalyst for a sustained spell of free-flowing Leeds action as they thundered forward.

Viduka headed just wide, Keane's cross saw a Smith header saved while Olivier Dacourt and Bakke were both narrowly off target with powerful efforts.

Barnsley were finding it hard to get out of their own half with an over hit Brian O'Callaghan cross their most dangerous moment.

Mike Sheron and Mitch Ward both tried their luck from distance - but those efforts were so far off target that they may as well not have bothered.

Back at the other end, Miller reacted smartly to deny Bakke, while more frantic defence from the Tykes led to the Norwegian being frustrated again.

And Bakke again forced a fine save out of Miller as United chased the second goal which would have opened the floodgates.

Right on the stroke of half time, Keane - after an incisive move from Mills, Bakke and Smith - flashed a shot just over the top.

And United almost made it two just after the restart when Miller raced from his line to block Viduka before Bakke's 20-yard volley was just the wrong side of the post.

But that was the cue for Barnsley to wake up as Batty tired and handed over midfield supremacy.

Neil Shipperley set up sub Bruce Dyer after 61 minutes and Robinson saved well - it was the first time United's keeper had been called into action.

Dyer was a handful and Rio Ferdinand was being extended, while Robinson had to be alert to clutch a Shipperley header out of thin air.

As United were pushed back, Robinson was called into yet more action but he saved his best until the 81st minute.

A Mateo Corbo corner was punched under pressure by the keeper. The ball only went as far as Alex O'Neil on the edge of the box.

And when he unleashed his volley, Robinson was still in the air and out of position. But, amazingly, he managed to arch his back and make a breathtaking save.

Barnsley must have guessed at that point it was not going to be their day - and right at the end Sheron was denied again by Robinson leaving United breathing a big sigh of relief.

"I thought that we should have been three or four goals up in the first half - but we didn't tuck the chances away," added O'Leary.

"I said to the players at half-time that one goal is never enough particularly in an FA Cup tie and we needed a second.

"But I thought we went out in the second half a very nervous team and they had a couple of chances.

"But the objective is to get into the next round. You don't want to be making the headlines as a shock and we avoided that."

The report used to be available online here.

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