Report - Huddersfield Town 1-2 Middlesbrough

Huddersfield Town story posted by Sean Makin on 13/09/2014
The first match of the Chris Powell era at Huddersfield Town ended in defeat as Middlesbrough took all three points courtesy of an injury-time penalty converted by Grant Leadbitter.Report - Huddersfield Town 1-2 Middlesbrough

Leadbitter had opened the scoring in the first half with a stunning free-kick but Jon Stead thought he had rescued a point with a late equaliser.

But Tommy Smith was adjudged to have fouled Adam Reach in the box deep into injury time and Leadbitter coolly slotted home the winner.

Mark Hudson made his debut for the Terriers at the heart of the defence after joining from Cardiff City on transfer deadline day. Smith started at right-back as Jack Robinson made his home debut at left-back after joining on a season-long loan from Queens Park Rangers. Jacob Butterfield started on the right flank against the club he left month and James Vaughan partnered Nahki Wells in attack.

Neither Radoslaw Majewksi and Adam Hammill were in the matchday squad.

Dimitrios Konstantopoulos started in goal for Boro and Daniel Ayala and Ben Gibson returned having missed the defeat at Reading a fortnight ago. Adam Clayton was making his first appearance against his former club where he spent two years and won the club's player of the year award last season.

It was Boro who had the better of a fiesty first half that threatened at points to boil over when Vaughan clashed with goalkeeper Konstantopoulos after being put through on goal by Wells. Vaughan was booked for the challenge and ended leaving the field on 26 minutes having picked up a calf injury. Captains Leadbitter and Lee Peltier had a heated exchange that the referee Kevin Wright had to split up.

Spanish striker Kike had scuffed a shot wide in early on and Wells had a chance with an acrobatic overhead kick that flew straight at Konstantopoulos.

Town defender Joel Lynch saw his header hit the top of the crossbar from Butterfield's corner before the former Boro man had an effort himself, forcing Konstantopoulos into a low save after beating two players.

It was Wells' foul on George Friend led to the opening goal on 36 minutes. Leadbitter hit an unstoppable free-kick from 35 yards out that flew into Alex Smithies' left hand top corner.

Boro began to dominate after taking the lead and Smithies had to be alert to push away Kike's low shot after being set up by Lee Tomlin.

Clayton nearly put the boot in against his former club but his shot could only find the side netting after jinxing his way into the Town penalty area.

The visitors continued the domination into the second half. Smithies did well to smother the ball at Kike's feet as well as making a smart save from Adomah's effort. The two Boro players combined minutes later but the Spanish striker headed the ball over despite being in a good position.

Boro sub Jelle Vossen hit a rasping 35 yard shot that flew wide whilst Leadbitter and Clayton had shots blocked as Hudson and Lynch put their bodies on the line.

It was difficult to see where a goal was going to come from for Huddersfield but with five minutes left sub Jon Stead thought he had rescued a point. Butterfield did well on the edge of crowded Boro box to get the ball out to the left for Danny Ward, who had just come off the bench, and he provided a low cross across goal that saw Stead have the simple task of tapping the ball into the net.

A minute later Wells spurned a good chance to put the Terriers in the lead when a superb deep cross from Butterfield found the striker in the box but Wells could only muster a tame effort that was gathered by Konstantopoulos.

It looked as though Town had rescued a point but in the second minute of the four minutes added on Smith was adjudged to have held back Adam Reach, who threw himself to the floor, and the referee had no hesitation in pointing straight to the spot.

Cool as you like Leadbitter slotted home the penalty to give Middlesbrough all three point.

Sean's Star Man - Mark Hudson


Huddersfield Town: Smithies, Smith, Lynch, Hudson, Robinson, Butterfield, Peltier (Ward 80), Coady, Bunn (Lolley 61), Vaughan (Stead 26), Wells.
Subs not used: Murphy, Dixon, Scannell, Wallace.

Middlesbrough: Konstantopoulos, Friend, Ayala, Gibson, Abella Perez, Adomah (Nsue 90+4), Clayton, Reach, Leadbitter, Tomlin (Vossen 59), Kike (Bamford 77).
Subs not used: Blackman, Woodgate, Whildschut, Whitehead.

Referee: Kevin Wright

Attendance: 17,993

This report by the author also appears on


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