Huddersfield Town 3 v 0 Notts County

Huddersfield Town story posted by Phill Rodgerson on 12/10/2002
Town were finally out of the blocks today, showing signs of their true potential. A much-needed win against fellow strugglers Notts County came as a big relief to everyone underneath the ?banana bars?. A dominating display by Town in which they were rarely troubled by County could?ve easily been a lot less flattering has the bombardment that was present in the first half had lasted longer.Huddersfield Town 3 v 0 Notts County

No man will be more relieved though, than our young striker who finally made the breakthrough he?s been aiming for since he broke into the first team ranks this season. He opened his scoring tally at Town with an early goal, combined with goals from Adi Moses and an own goal from Notts County defender Nick Fenton.

The game started slowly with both teams feeling each other out and trying to find a way out of the deadlocked midfield. After some failed passing movements by Town they finally managed to break into their stride after 6 minutes when some good work down the right by the impressive captain Jenks found John Thorrington in the area. Filling in for injured Danny Schofield, the American volleyed a shot straight at the County goalkeeper who could only palm it back out to Thorrington. His second bite at the cherry was blocked wide for a corner by Nick Fenton.

Town notched up the gears just a minute later to really turn the heat up on the Magpies. Jon Stead was played into the box on the right. He turned his marker on the byeline and cut the ball back for striking partner Martin Smith who didn?t connect as well as we?ve seen him do lately. His shot glided harmlessly and disappointingly over the bar.

On 9 minutes a great opportunity for Town looked like it had been wasted when both Smith and Stead dallied on the ball. On the edge of the area Smith dispatched the ball to Stead who took his time to make room for the shot, but once the opening appeared he hit a clean shot that caught goalkeeper Garden napping, just clipping his post and bouncing clear.

The continuous pressure proved too much for Notts County as their defence was infiltrated for an opener on 15 minutes. Some good hustle shown by Holland managed to win possession near the centre circle. He quickly disposed of the ball to Stead who was slotted through on goal as the defence were momentarily stunned. Stead shot across the goalkeeper and a deflection off a defenders foot took it over the grounded keeper and into the roof of the net for Jon Stead?s first ever goal for the first team.

Town almost let their lead slip just 3 minutes later when a mistake by returning centre-back Adi Moses had Stallard and Allsopp sniffing goals. A lobbed ball proved too high for Moses and his head flicked it temptingly into the path of the awaiting strikers. Fortunately, our 6?6 goalkeeper Scott Bevan bravely lept above their heads to claim the ball before it got anywhere near them.

After 21 minutes and Holland again turned provider for Stead. This time he slipped the ball to him just outside the area. Stead, high on confidence, decided let one fly at goal from distance but his shot was narrowly wide of Garden?s post.

On 23 minutes a rejuvenated John Thorrington was upto his usual tricks, weaving in and out of 4 members of the Notts County defence. His quick feet and close control absolutely baffled the men in yellow who could only watch as John zipped past them one-by-one. To deal with the wing-wizard the ball was cleared for a corner.

From the resulting corner Town doubled their lead on just 24 minutes. Drifted in by Simon Baldry it found Chris Holland waiting deep into the box. He brought the ball down quickly and drilled it straight at goal. Adi Moses, waiting just 2 yards away from the goal line couldn?t believe his luck when the ball fell at his feet and gifted him with the easiest opportunity he?ll have to score all season.

The rest of the first half almost dipped into obscurity as Town seemed well suited with their 2 goal lead and Notts County were unable to create anything which could be considered as threatening Bevan?s goal. Only a minor opportunity, mainly created out of Bevan?s indecisiveness, allowed Mark Stallard in but the recovering Nat Brown got across his man well to clear for a corner.

Much like the first half, the second half too took much time to have any real opportunities created. It took six minutes for John Thorrington to carve his way down the right wing and slide it into the path of Martin Smith. Smith?s left footed shot wasn?t able to find a way through the densely packed penalty box of County.

On 55 minutes Town were denied an almost certain penalty and possibly even a sending off offence. Some fantastic link-up play down the right between Baldry and Thorrington allowed Steve Jenkins the room to put a great cross into the back post. Awaiting at the back was Smithy who got up above his marker Danny Stone who blatantly handled the ball above his head to block Martin?s goal bound header. But referee Mr Hegley waved away any Town protests for a penalty.

On 56 minutes a nice flick-on header by Jon Stead had Thorrington once again beating his man. This time, the frustrated Ian Richardson decided to tug Thorrington back, earning himself a yellow card for his troubles. The resulting free-kick was intuitively played low to the near post with Baldry approaching for the sneaky chance at goal. The defender had Baldry?s run tracked, though, and managed to turn the ball behind.

Another blatant looking handball offence in the area was once again turned down by the referee as this time Dwayne Mattis broke free. The ball into the area was brought down well and the Ireland Under-21 international hit the ball towards goal as Ian Richardson and substitute Paul Bolland flung their bodies in the way. The result appeared to be a block with the arm by one of the players but any claims were once again turned down.

On 72 minutes justice came for the potential handball just a minute earlier. After bandying about a bit the ball found its way to Jon Stead waiting on the penalty spot. He directed his shot straight down the middle, but in an attempt to block the ball the shot hit Fenton?s heals and left his goalkeeper unable to stop it hitting the back of the net. Most sites report it as Jon Stead?s goal but I would credit this one as an own-goal with such a huge deflection.

By this point, though, Jon Stead looked absolutely shattered having run himself ragged for the whole of the match. Despite this, he was still putting himself about late on and trying to gain his first senior hat-trick. A good cross from Kevin Sharp found him in the box on 75 minutes found Stead who wasn?t able to control his shot and it went embarrassingly wide for the centre-forward.

3 minutes later and a great opportunity to really make Notts County blush was spurned when confusion between Stead and Thorrington spurned the chance. An impressive Simon Baldry was once again challenging the full-back and round his man. He laid a perfect ball into the front post but as the Thorrington and Stead couldn?t make their minds up it allowed the County defence an easy clearance.

Notts County?s first shot on goal came on 82 minutes with a long-range effort from County?s best player Danny Allsopp. It was easily collected by Bevan, much to the sarcastic jubilation of Magpie fans as they broke into chants of ?We?ve got a shot on goal!?

Wadsworth introduced two late substitutes, replacing both Baldry and the tired Stead to standing ovations from the Town faithful. They were replaced by strikers Macari and Brown on 86 and 88 minutes respectively.

Substitute Paul Macari almost had the last say in the match when John Thorrington?s corner found Nat Brown in the midst of the area. His header down the middle was blocked by Garden. Paul Macari pounced on the rebound but Garden was able to compose himself and block his shot, preventing a fourth Town goal.


Scott Bevan (5): Very little to do, with one late shot. Looks indecisive when called to action for one-on-ones and his kicking is still far from being perfect. Two things which can easily be worked on ? and should be!

Steve Jenkins (7.5) ? Looked to be on for a blinder at the start. He took his man quite often and put in some good crosses. Very little to do defensively.

Kevin Sharp (7) ? Got forward well. Didn?t have much support from forward players as they tended to gather down the right.

Adi Moses (7) ? Still as solid as we come to expect. One dodgy mistake but little else to deal with.

Nat Brown (7) ? Similar to Adi Moses. Looks very assured for such a young player though!

Simon Baldry (8.5) ? A magnificent display from Baldry. Ian Richardson will have nightmares about his runs tonight!

Dwayne Mattis (7.5) ? Strong and confident in midfield. Not a lot for him to do other than to keep the barrier in front of the defence.

Chris Holland (7.5) ? Nearly exactly the same as Mattis. A good shot which should?ve gone in if Moses hadn?t nicked it though.

John Thorrington (8) ? He?s getting back to his old ways! He took his man many times and realising his inability to cross he utilised his pace by getting into the box to play simple balls in. Much more effective.

Jon Stead (8.5) ? A hard-working display earned him (two/one) goal(s). A lone striker for a lot of the time he managed to hold the ball up well and played some insightful balls to the wings.

Martin Smith (7.5) ? Not as good as usual but still good. This is Smithy off-form, which can only be a good thing! Missed some good half chances, but I expect he?ll be back on the scoresheet next week.

Kenny Irons (6) ? Little for Kenny to do, but did put in a good determined tackle which raises his score a little.

Scott McDonald (n/a) ? Scott McDonald played?

Paul Macari ? Amazing work done in such little time (compared to McDonald). Ran down the clock in the corner and even came within a whisker of grabbing a goal for himself in injury time.

Ref?s Rating ? Mr G Hegley (4): Pretty awful stuff. Some horrendous challenges by Notts County went unnoticed and two refused handballs make him a pretty terrible referee. Unlike last weeks referee though, he was having no stupid ?injury games? from the County players which they tried a few times.


Huddersfield Town:

1 Scott Bevan

2 Steve Jenkins (C)

22 Kevin Sharp

27 Nat Brown

5 Adi Moses

11 Simon Baldry (off 88)

10 John Thorrington

33 Dwayne Mattis

6 Chris Holland

19 Martin Smith (off 77)

14 Jon Stead (off 86) (MOTM)


35 Phil Senior

15 Scott McDonald (on 88)

8 Kenny Irons (on 77)

31 Paul Macari (on 86)

20 Thomas Heary

Notts County:

12 Stuart Garden

2 Nick Fenton

6 Ian Richardson (YEL 56)

7 Marcel Cas

9 Mark Stallard (YEL 69)

10 Danny Allsopp

11 Kevin Nicholson

13 Richard Liburd (off 73)

15 Michael Brough

24 Darren Caskey (off 58)

28 Danny Stone


1 Steve Mildenhall

14 Paul Bolland (on 58)

18 Simon Ramsden (on 73) (YEL 90)

21 Paul Heffernen

30 Paul Riley


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