Writer: Tom Bodell
Date:Saturday March 31 2012
WATFORD CONTINUED their Play Off charge with an excellent victory at Leeds United - their first victory over the Whites since the 2006 Play Off Final triumph.
A brace from Big Chris Iwelumo secured the win for the Hornets who took the lead after just five minutes beore a second a minute from time. Leeds went down to 10 men in injury time with Paul Connolly sent off.
Sean Dyche made three changes from the side that won against Ipswich with Britt Assombalonga replaced on the bench by Craig Forsyth, Chris Iwelumo switching places with Joe Garner on the bench and Alex Kacaniklic replaced by Mark Yeates down the left hand side.
Neil Warnock was without centre-backs Patrick Kisnorbo, Darren O`Dea and Andy O`Brien so Alex Bruce and Tom Lees started. Down the right-hand side, Aiden White recovered from a knock in time to start.
Iwelumo handed the Hornets the lead in the 8th minute, firing past Andy Lonergan after good work from Yeates and Troy Deeney.
Iwelumo had gone close just minutes before when he sliced a half-volley comfortably over following a Lloyd Doyley cross.
Watford could have had a second after 20 minutes following good work from Carl Dickinson, Deeney testing Lonergan with a low shot which the Leeds 'keeper blocked with his feet.
In half-time stoppage-time, Deeney held off Bruce before powering on and seeing a shot from the edge of the area pushed wide for a corner.
Watford had Tomasz Kuszczak to thank for preserving their lead 11minutes into the second half. The Manchester United loanee blocked Bruce`s header initially before making himself big to block Robert Snodgrass`s close-range effort immediately after.
Leeds substitute Ramon Nunez had Kuszczak at full stretch just seconds after entering the fray. The Hondouran international curling a shot narrowly wide of the Pole`s goal with virtually his first touch.
With 10 minutes left on the clock, Watford somehow contrived to miss a goalden opportunity to double the lead. After Lonergan`s mistake, Deeney was unable to beat the former Preston 'keeper, before trying to square the ball to strike partner Iwelumo. Somehow though, enough bodies got in the way to prevent the big Scot from connecting with the pass.
With just minutes left, Iwelumo doubled the Hornet`s lead after excellent work in the penalty area once more from Deeney and Sean Murray. The former Burnley man was on hand to finish from close range after Lonergan denied Deeney with an excellent stop.
Deep in injury time, Leeds right-back Connolly was rightly dismissed after collecting his second booking of the afternoon.
The final word goes to @TivertonHornet (Jay Richardson) who Tweeted: "Iwullllllllooooooo yesssss 2-0 dirty Leeds Billy Bremner, Alan Smith, Gary McAllister, Gordon Strachan your boys took a hell of a beating."
Leeds United: Lonergan; Connolly, Bruce, Lees, Robinson; White (Webber), Clayton (Nunez), Brown, Snodgrass (c); McCormack & Becchio (Forssell)
Subs: Bromby & Thompson.
Watford: Kuszczak; Doyley, Taylor, Nosworthy, Dickinson; Murray, Eustace (c), Hogg, Yeates (Forsyth); Iwelumo & Deeney.
Subs: Loach (gk); Bennett, Buaben & Garner.
Referee: Mr P Tierney.
Date:Saturday March 31 2012
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