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Leeds United

Coca-Cola Football League Championship
Game 20: Wednesday 24 November 2004

Leeds United 2 - 2 Watford
(Half-time: 1 - 1)
Crowd: 24585
Referee: M Jones (Cheshire)
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Match Facts
Leeds United Team Watford
Neil Sullivan   Richard Lee
Gary Kelly   Sean Dyche
Danny Pugh   Neil Cox
Paul Butler   Jack Smith Booked - 76 minutes
Goal - 86 minutes Clarke Carlisle   James Chambers
Sean Gregan   Neal Ardley Subbed - 90 minutes
Goal - 21 minutes Jermaine Wright   Gavin Mahon
Booked - 40 minutes Simon Walton   Brynjar Gunnarsson
John Oster   Jermaine Darlington
David Healy   Heidar Helguson Booked - 31 minutes
Subbed - 45 minutes Brian Deane   Bruce Dyer Goal - 9 minutes Goal - 71 minutes Subbed - 87 minutes
Scott Carson   Alec Chamberlain
Matthew Kilgallon   Scott Fitzgerald Sub - 87 minutes
Matthew Spring   Jay Demerit
Aaron Lennon   Marcus Gayle
Sub - 45 minutes Julian Joachim   Ashley Young Sub - 90 minutes
Match Reports
Nick Allen Watford
BBC Leeds 2 - 2 Watford
The Independent Carlisle rescues Leeds after Dyer's double Carlisle saves Whites
The Sporting Life Leeds 2 - 2 Watford
The Electronic Telegraph Carlisle comes to Leeds' rescue
Yorkshire Evening Post Gutsy United make a point

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.

Watford - Nick Allen

Can't really complain about a draw. There were spells in the game when they were passing and moving too slickly for our boys to get a foot on the ball and then 10 minutes later we were doing it to them. Their keeper had a good deal more work to do than Sullivan - and he pulled off one or two blinders as well as being well positioned to get saves in to foil some of our other attacks.

We started with the same team as Saturday and you can't complain about that. Crowd expectation was way too much - there was no way that we were going to get a repeat of the QPR game. This was a tough competitive match. Before the game had really settled Watford opened the scoring - although not if you were my pissed up mate who was too busy with his face in a plate of pie & peas to notice, so when he was told a few minutes later that Watford had scored he stood there shaking his head and not believing. He did of course, do the obvious thing, which was to ask everyone around "what's the score mate?" only to shake his head in disbelief every time on hearing the news. So when we equalised (or went 1-0 depending on which universe you were in) he celebrated wildly about us taking the lead only to finally see 1-1 on the scoreboard.

Their goal came after some criminal dithering from our defence, hanging off letting their forwards make their passes - by the time the ball came to Dyer it was too late to do anything about it. Can't help but agree with Rich W that Killa instead of Butler wouldn't have allowed their guys this much time on the ball. The reply was reasonably swift - following some decent pressure, we took a while to get a head of steam rolling but once we did we had Watford pinned back - a cross, a nod down from Deane and Wright blasted home from the edge of the box, nicely into the bottom corner. To be fair though Watford had the best of the first half and could have scored more. Their strength as a team looks to be going forward because as a defence they're pretty bad - except in the air, the 2 CHalfs won a lot of ball in the air.

We were the better team in the 2nd half exerting more sustained pressure on Watford and so it was a surprise when they scored again - the result of some horrendous cock-up between Butler and Gregan presented Dyer with the ball and no-one between him and goal. Not a lot Sullivan could do about that. Deane went off at half time having done his impression of Bambi on ice and doing the splits (almost) - he got up very gingerly holding himself (!). However being the tactical geniuses we are bringing the 5ft 9 Joachim on for the 6ft 3 Deane didn't stop us from playing a long ball game for most of the 2nd half. Despite this we did make a couple of good chances for Healy - one of which I'd have expected him to finish - added to which there were several goal mouth scrambles. Until eventually good work down the right from Joachim and Wright - and some persistance - lead to Wright chipping a cross to the far post where Carlisle - who had gone up front for a while - headed down into the net at the back post. Funnily enough I always felt confident that we could and would equalise, their defence wasn't good when we got the ball down and passed it about or ran at them.

When we were good we were very very good but when we were bad we were horrid.

SULLIVAN - excellent game - several good saves and decent judgement of coming for crosses and generally taking charge of the box.

KELLY - woefully out of position quite a lot of the time - distribution - A hump down the line or nothing. Is Richardson really no better at Rback?

PUGH - defensively mainly dreadful - I go back to my thoughts at the start of the season - he doesn't tackle properly, he doesn't know how to (see QPR's goal) - not a good attribute in a defender - but pretty good going forward.

CARLISLE - the best of our defenders yesterday - solid - hard in the tackle, won a lot in the air and not phased by players running at him at pace. Still has shaky moments. Thoroughly deserved the goal though.

BUTLER - however slow, ponderous etc he is - and believe me he is - he is Blackwell's captain. There is no way KB will drop him even if Killa and Clarke should be given a go. Wasn't anywhere near Dyer for most of the game.

GREGAN - see Butler - KB isn't going to drop him - whatever. He is playing at a consistently better level than 6 weeks ago but for me its still not enough - whoever compared him with Batty is frankly insane, no comparison. Ever. He is slow, he fouls rather than tackles and his distribution is uneven.

WALTON - some decent moment mixed with some bad ones - which is what we're going to get from him for a couple of years. But at his age that's fair enough. I think he's grown in stature already this season and he does want to lead by example - captain in 5 years time if we keep him?

WRIGHT - does the going forward stuff brilliantly - our best at getting through the opposition defence with one cute pass - doesn''t do defence at all. With other workhorses around him we can cope with this. Its not a luxury to be able to unpick a defence at this level.

OSTER - flitted in and out.

DEANE - Didn't do too much before going off injured.

HEALY - should be playing through the middle - seems wasted out on the left - but doesn't like heading the ball at all. Missed a good chance.

JOACHIM - came on and did reasonably given the service

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