Huddersfield Town 2-1 Lincoln City

Huddersfield Town story posted by Sean Makin on 21/02/2004
Huddersfield Town jumped to fifth in the Third Division with a controversial winner by loan signing Pawel Abbott that sent Lincoln City boss Keith Alexander fuming.Huddersfield Town 2-1 Lincoln City
As I got into the ground to sit in the Kilner Bank you could feel how tense this game was going to be.
Jackson had only made one change from the midweek draw down at Bristol Rovers with Andy Holdsworth being replaced with Nat Brown.
Last seasons play-off final losers came to the McAlpine Stadium back of a giving York City a hammering 4-1 up at Bootham Crescent in midweek.
Gary Fletcher was their top scorer with 12 goals so far this season, Lincoln are known for their aggressive and physical football and Town had not beaten Lincoln in 22 years and today would be Town?s day.

Town should guts and determination of genuine promotion contenders with Jon Worthington grafting as ever in midfield and with Andy Booth working hard and putting himself about.
Town were on the attack straight from kick-off with Andy Booth having the best chance but it was disaster for the Terriers with 19 minutes gone.
A terrible mix-up between Steve Yates and Efe Sodje let Marcus Richardson capitalise, Sodje was never going to catch him, Nathan Clarke ran over to cover for Sodje, Phil Senior came running out from his goal and collided with Clarke on the edge of the area, both players went down, letting Marcus Richardson with an easy tap in.
Booth was inches away from levelling as he dived onto Nat Brown?s cross that whistled past the post but Town lacked that cutting edge to find the net.
They could have been dead and buried when more defensive errors let in Francis Green but Senior made up for his error earlier on with blocking with Green one on one with the keeper.

Two minutes into the second half Booth earned Town?s equalizer. A Tony Carss corner from the right found the head of Booth at the back post who headed it across goal to find the stooping Efe Sodje to header the ball powerfully into the net from close range.
Then came the most controversial goal probably I?ve ever seen (I don?t know about anyone else who has seen anything like this!).
Sixty-seven minutes into the tense battle, a pass back was hammered up field by Lincoln keeper Alan Marriott, Sodje headed the ball back in the Lincoln half for which Andy Booth and a Lincoln City defender went for (TV replays show it came off the Lincoln player?s head) and with a linesman flagging Abbott offside, Other players slowed expecting the whistle but it never came from referee Mr George Cain ran across and coolly took the ball round the keeper who had stopped for thinking it was offside and Abbott tucked the ball into the back of the net.
The referee ran over to his assistant with Town players following thinking that we was going to book Abbott for time wasting but he over ruled his assistant and said the goal stood and the McAlpine Stadium erupted. Apparently in yesterday?s paper (Monday) it said that Lincoln keeper Marriott said to Abbott ?Go on put the ball in the net you?ll get booked for it?.

The referee was criticized for other decisions as Town felt they should have had penalties for handball and for Abbott being felled in the box which was a clear penalty and Lincoln also felt hard done by on a couple of occasions how Steve Yates got away with that handball in the box I?ll never know.

As much as Lincoln pilled on the pressure taking the corner tally to 11, Town defended for their lives particularly after Abbott?s goal.
Clarke was magnificent as ever at the back with Sodje and Yates bravely stuck feet and heads to block a flurry of efforts as Lincoln pilled on the pressure towards the end, as did the inspirational Booth.
Senior made a fantastic one handed save to stop Lincoln sub Simon Yeo grabbing an equalizer in a frantic finish, Lincoln hit man Gary Fletcher heading against the Town bar in a crowded area.
While Booth went close at the other end when Schofield jinxed his way round two Lincoln players before putting a devious cross to Booth at the far post from the right but Booth?s header hit the outside of the post and out for a goal kick.

Town held out with a mixture of good fortune and bulldog brave defending to get the all-important 3 points over our play off rivals.
At the full time whistle Town huddled with manager Peter Jackson said it all about Town?s spirit and determination.

Town: Senior 7, Brown 6(Holdsworth 52) 7, Clarke 9, Sodje 8, Yates 8, Lloyd 8( Mirfin 69) 7, Worthington 8, Carss 8, Schofield 8, Booth 10*, Abbott 8

Lincoln City: Marriot, Bailey, Weaver(Yeo 72), Morgan, Futcher, Mayo, Sedgemore(Liburn 82), Gain, Green, Richardson(Cropper 87), Fletcher.

Referee: Mr G Cain Attendance: 11,553


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