In what was a weekend of mixed fortunes for the three West Yorkshire sides in action on Saturday, Leeds United picked up a rare away win, Bradford City scored a last minute equaliser, and Huddersfield couldn’t quite find a goal, and lost.
Leeds United, the region’s in-form side, picked up another three points on Saturday, in a 3-0 away win at Doncaster. Leeds dominated the first half, and Matt Smith’s goal 19 minutes into the game gave United the lead. Doncaster fought back in the second half, however, and despite strong pressure from the hosts, Leeds’ defence stood strong, and matched everything that Rovers had to offer. A goal against the run of play with 15 minutes left from Ross McCormack doubled United’s lead, and Rudolph Austin scored a third in the 87th minute. The scoreline flattered Leeds somewhat, in a game in which they didn’t dominate or control as the scoreboard suggested. However, the form of McCormack is very encouraging, with the Scot now bagging eleven goals in his last seven games. Victory for Leeds sees them sit in sixth place in the table, seven points off Burnley in second place.
Bradford City had to rely on Bermudan striker Nahki Wells to gain a point at home to table-toppers Leyton Orient. The first half was even, but a fantastic curling effort from Orient’s Lloyd James in injury time saw the visitors go in at half-time in the lead, with their only shot on target all game. The Bantams fought back in the second half, but despite their dominance over the away team, they could not find a way through, despite the change in formation by manager Phil Parkinson to a 3-4-1-2, with striker Alan Connell impressing from the bench. It was Connell who won a free kick in injury time, 20 yards out from goal, and this free kick was struck wonderfully into the top corner by the in-form Wells, who now has 23 goals in his last 25 games. Bradford lie seventh in the League One table, 4 points behind Rotherham, who visit Valley Parade on Boxing Day.
The third West Yorkshire team in action this weekend, Huddersfield Town, had 27 shots at home to Reading, but the absence of striker James Vaughan was evident as The Terriers could not score. Huddersfield pressured the visitors in the early stages, but a Reading counter-attack led to the only goal of the game. Pavel Pobrebnyak’s cross set up Billy Sharp, who scored despite the best efforts of Town keeper Alex Smithies. Huddersfield dominated the second half, but Reading keeper Alex McCarthy was in fine form to deny Joel Lynch and Danny Ward. Huddersfield defender Lynch was sent off in injury time, for two bookable offences. Defeat for Huddersfield sees them 12th in the Championship, 7 points behind Leeds in sixth place.