Huddersfield Town 2 v 1 Birmingham City

Huddersfield Town story posted by Garfield (Admin) on 06/01/2008
Huddersfield Town marched through to the 4th round of the FA Cup after a well-deserved 2-1 win over Premiership Birmingham City. Goals from Luke Beckett and Chris Brandon saw the Terriers through and welcomed Blues boss Alex McLeish to the glorious cup competition in not the kind of way he would have imagined it.Huddersfield Town 2 v 1 Birmingham City

Town took the lead after just three minutes on the clock. The Birmingham defence looked shaky and Danny Schofield took full advantage of the situation as he strode in to the penalty area and unleashed a low shot at goal which Maik Taylor could only spill in to the path of Beckett ? there was only one outcome after that. The experienced striker stabbed the ball home in to an empty net sending the Town fans delirious.

Birmingham were level on 20 minutes. A quick break following a Town corner saw Daniel De Ridder sprint down the left who then played in Fabrice Muamba. The speedy midfielder sprinted past Robbie Williams and shot at Town ?keeper Matt Glennon. The former Falkirk stopper managed to get a firm hand to the shot but when the ball broke loose to Garry O?Connor, the Scottish international slotted home with ease.

Birmingham could have given themselves the lead, but O'Connor, Gary McSheffrey and substitute Cameron Jerome all missed extremely presentable opportunities. Instead it was Brandon who was left to claim the winner with 10 minutes left of the game.

Town?s winner started with Beckett, clearly tiring but charging manfully down the wing, who heaved a cross deep into the danger area. As Liam Ridgewell and Jaidi were pulled to the near post, Brandon was given space at the opposite upright to drill home his volley and send the home fans into raptures.

The FA Cup victory gave Andy Ritchie something to smile about. After the game he said: "This is a fantastic day for the club, the town, the players and the fans. The supporters were superb and thankfully we've been able to reward them with a tremendous win.

"I'm really pleased because it's never easy facing Premier League opposition but I thought we just about deserved it.

"Chris Brandon and Luke Beckett have been fantastic. We've been telling Chris to push forward more in search of goals and look what's happened. I don't like to single out individuals though, because everyone was fantastic and they've given me a lovely selection dilemma ahead of the next game.

"We showed great movement for the winning goal and we've proved we can play a bit.

"We can take some real positives out of this now. I'd like to get drawn against another of the big fish in the next round, although the chairman would probably want us to be away from home and in front of a full house."

Alex McLeish took the defeat gracefully.

"It was a half-hearted performance from us. Huddersfield showed better composure and won most of the fifty-fifties, which is baffling considering the way we have been playing in the Premier League recently.

"It was up and down all the time and a roller-coaster ride. I've been assessing the players in the last seven weeks and we definitely need to add some new faces to the squad.

"I would have liked a Cup run but good luck to Huddersfield. Well done to them, but our fans deserve better than that."

The Town fans will now be looking forward to drawing another Premiership team in the 4th round.

Huddersfield: Glennon, Sinclair, Mirfin, Berrett, Williams (Skarz 46), Kamara (Jevons 79), Holdsworth, Collins, Brandon, Beckett, Schofield.

Subs: Smithies, Young, Killock.

Booked: Brandon, Skarz, Berrett.

Goals: Beckett 4, Brandon 81.

Birmingham: Maik Taylor, Kelly, Queudrue, Ridgewell, Jaidi, McSheffrey, Muamba (Doyle 66), De Ridder, Larsson, O'Connor, Forssell (Jerome 62).

Subs: Sadler, Parnaby, Mutch.

Booked: Queudrue, Ridgewell, Jaidi.

Goals: O'Connor 19.

Referee: Steve Tanner (Somerset).


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