MK Dons 2 - 1 Huddersfield Town

Huddersfield Town story posted by Neil Armstead on 12/02/2005
A very disappointing result for Town, who again threw away what seemed a comfortable one goal lead, against a somewhat poor opposition. It was an injury time winner that sunk Town, who had pressured The Dons throughout the game, only to see what looked like a perfectly good goal disallowed, and yet again having to combat against some shocking refereeing blunders.MK Dons 2 - 1 Huddersfield Town

Town started with a very young defence, with Rabs' in goal, followed by Mirfin, Tom Clarke making his full debut, his brother Nathan and at left back Rob Edwards. The midfield remained unchanged, with Schofield and Brandon the wingers, acnhored by Ahmed and Worthington. Booth and Beckett were agin preferred to Abbott, who was left on the bench.

Danny Wilson stuck with the same team that trounced Bradford 4-1 in midweek. This side included the impressive Izale Mcleod, alongside Clive Platt and Wade Small.

The first 10 minutes were uneventful and a scrappy midfield battle. The first real action came after 11 minutes when Beckett, playing the last game of his loan spell for Town, hit a speculative looping shot from 25 yards, which flew wide of the left hand upright. It became evident soon after that the gusty winds around the stadium were to have a major impact on the game, as after 15 minutes MK were awarded a freekick which was skied over the bar - or so we thought - as the ball seemed to stop dead in mid-air and nearly dropped beneath the crossbar.

Town were restricted to long range efforts, despite having the majority of the play, but continued pressure Baker's goal. After 23 minutes, an MK cross from the left hung in the air, and a lack of communication between Edwards and Mirfin resulted in both players laying prostrate on the ground after clattering into eachother. Edwards was removed from play, with Jon McCombe taking his place, thus making the average age of the defence much younger.

Further Town pressure resulted in a freekick from the right flank, taken by Clarke and curled towards the 6 yard area, where Booth nodded home for Town, his 6th of the season. They say that you're at your most vulnerable after scoring, and the proved to be true, as Ben Harding, who was surely 5 yards offside was put clean through on goal, forcing a fantastic save from Rachubka, which rolled into the path of Mcleod who had an open goal to slot the ball into. This happened on 32 minutes, just 3 minutes after Booth had scored.

It became apparent soon after that Mirfin was still struggling with an injury, and so Town were forced into a second substitution, replacing Mirfin with Fowler, fresh from international duty in midweek. Town then went on to rain shots upon MK's goal until half time, and were unfortunate not to get the second goal.

Half Time: 1-1
Yet again I will have to comment on the unreliability of the officials. MK were denied a stonewall penalty in the first half, not only that, but their goal was quite clearly offside, although I will be watching the highlights on TV to find out whether my point is correct or not. Prepare for more refereeing blunders in the second half....

At half time Jacko used his last substitution, replacicing the apparently injured Booth with top scorer Abbott. Town again went on the offence, creating chances with crosses down the wings, notably on 47 minutes when Worthington crossed the ball and Abbott was unlucky to connect.

After 48 minutes Malvin Kamara replaced Wade Small.

Another disputed offside decision was to follow, when Brandon was put through om 53 minutes and dribbled towards the box. The linesman waited and eternity to raise his flag, but did, to the anger and frustration of the Town faithful who had travelled 160 miles to see the game.

The laack of experience in Town's defence began to show, as Tom Clarke failed in an attempt to play the ball back to the keeper, and instead set Mcleod clean through on goal. However, an excellent redeeming tackle by Tom Clarke won the ball back for Town.

Town were refused another penalty after a clear handball in the area by an MK defender. Minutes later, after 75 minutes, Town had a goal disallowed, when a freeckick was taken by Fowler from the apex of the penalty area and Abbott headed past the arm of the keeper with Beckett poking in at the back post. However, another offside was given, and Abbott was booked fro his protests. If Beckett realy was offside, the question has to be asked as to why he touched the ball anyway, since Abbott's perfectly legal header was goalward anyway.

Abbott then had a golden chance on 87 minutes from 8 yards out, but curled the ball over the bar. A minute later Beckett wasted another chance after being harried by the MK defence. It seemed Town looked like the only team that would score.

In injury time, Kamara pushed down the right and sent in the cross which Town failed to clear, and was finished by Clive Platt, to the despair of the Town players and fans.

I won't take anything away from Town's performance, we deserved to win, but yet again due to failure to take chances and due to refereeing decisions we lost a possible 3 points. It has to be pointed out that also, Town's defence were very inexperienced, and we need to see the new defensive signing soon, especially after the injuries to Edwards and Mirfin.

Neil's man of the match: Adnan Ahmed, who was solid in midfield, and even better when forced to fill in at left back.

MK Dons: Baker, Oyedele, Chorley, Pensee-Bilong, Crooks (Puncheon 66), Small (Kamara 49), Harding, Mitchell, Lewington, Platt, McLeod. Subs Not Used: Smart, Herve, Palmer.
Booked: Mitchell
Goals: McLeod 33, Platt 90

Huddersfield: Rachubka, T Clarke, Mirfin (Fowler 40), N Clarke, Edwards (McCombe 26), Brandon, Worthington, Ahmed, Schofield, Booth (Abbott 45), Beckett. Subs Not Used: Mendes, Senior.
Booked: Abbott
Goals: Booth 30.

Att: 4,793.

Ref: B Curson (Leicestershire).


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