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Sheffield United
3 - 2
Sheffield Wednesday

Bramall Lane


Attendance: 29,500


No Witty headlines, no messing about, the Blades did exactly what was needed tonight, with a 3-2 victory over City rivals Sheffield Wednesday for the first time since 2006.

Second half strikes from Marcus Tudgay and Etienne Esajas weren't enough to comeback from an electric first half which saw the Blades race into a 3-0 lead.

As expected, Matt Kilgallon failed to make the side and Kevin Blackwell explained after the game that the defender, who's at the centre of a contract row hasn't been out of bed for five days. Therefore, 11th hour loan signing Andrew Davies lined up alongside Chris Morgan at the heart of the Blades defence.

Unlike in previous encounters, the game began with the feel of a Steel City derby, neither side able to gain control. However, with the Blades second corner in a short space of time, Chris Morgan, unmarked, headed goalwards and the ball fell to Jamie Ward who instinctively poked the ball home on the turn before celebrating in front of the John Street faithful (and the Bramall Lane lower tier).

Varney and Potter both had shots from distance that caused no trouble for Mark Bunn, and when another set piece fell in the Wednesday are, Evans shot was deflected home by under fire Darius Henderson.

After Bunn tipped over a header from Tudgay, the Blades suffered their first blow. Jamie Ward went down under a tackle from Johnson, and was withdrawn with a suspected hamstring injury. It could see the striker out for around six weeks.

Cotterill replaced the Northern Ireland international and his free-kick landed on the head of Darius Henderson, unmarked, five yards from goal, but his header was straight into the hands of Lee Grant.

Cotterill did eventually get an assist on 42 minutes. His marauding run was followed by a cross for Henderson that was headed home in "Des Walkeresque fashion" by full back Lewis Buxton.

After previously having a word with Henderson, referee Wiley booked him just before half time for "persistent infringement of the laws of the game" (yes, that's the official term).

Unusual scenes followed at Bramall Lane, with fans smiling on the concourse at half-time, but those confident moods would soon turn to second half nerves, Esajas replaced Johnson for the Visitors and it soon paid dividend.

Varney blocked a header by Esajas, but Marcus Tudgay was on hand to expertly volley home left footed into the bottom corner.

The second half would then follow a similar pattern to previous games, with the trailing side throwing balls and men forward but with no real quality, or clear cut chances as consequence.

However, the visitors closed the lead down to one goal just after the hour; Cotterill's foul on Wood gave the Owls a free-kick thirty yards out, which Etienne Esajas struck hard and low past the despairing Bunn in goal.

The final four and a half hours (well, that's what it felt like) was played out with Sheffield Wednesday trying to camp in the Blades area, and United hitting them on the counter.

Ched Evans had an effort saved, before Lee Grant was again called into action making a sensational save from Darius Henderson.

Esajas had another effort saved by Bunn and Kyle Walker was on hand in the final seconds to prevent a final chance.

It was Kevin Blackwell's first derby win in the fourth attempt and one to savour.

Star Player

Alan Wiley stole the show dishing out yellow cards to anybody who moved. David Cotterill picking one up for delaying the action despite merely intercepting a pass. Time wasting tactics are one thing, gamesmanship is completely different. However, the Vital Man of the Match for tonight's win goes to Nick Montgomery who epitomised everything a Sheffield United player should be tonight, with a battling performance all over the pitch. Midfield partner James Harper impressed, as did Jamie Ward during his short stint on the field. In the Sheffield Wednesday camp, Lee Grant and Marcus Tudgay are the prize assets who make a real difference to the team. Meanwhile, Michael Gray and Etienne caused problems on the wing in the second half, but with Darren Purse and Lewis Buxton in the back four, it gives any team a chance.

Player Ratings

Mark Bunn


Kyle Walker


Chris Morgan


Andrew Davies


Andy Taylor


Jamie Ward, off 33

8 - Despite only being on the pitch around half an hour.

Nick Montgomery


James Harper


Keith Treacy


Darius Henderson


Ched Evans


David Cotterill, on 33, off 90


Stephen Quinn


Ryan France


Kevin Blackwell

"To be honest with you that monkey has been on my back for a while.

"As great a season as we had last season many locals dismissed it because we lost twice to Sheffield Wednesday.

"So it was a massive, massive victory tonight. I had 10 new players who had never experienced a Sheffield derby.

"Try tell them what it's like. They now know what it's like. I'm delighted to get such a big result."

"Andrew Davies looked a bit rusty in the first half an hour, but as the game went on he got better and better.

"He came in this afternoon and it was a case of throwing him in, so he showed terrific mental toughness.

"We were superb in the first half. It could have been four or five, but Wardy was a big loss.

"He's on fire at the moment. He took his goal really well. He has goals in him and he's a real threat, so to lose him for six weeks is a blow."

Brian Laws

"I blame myself because you've got to pick the right team.

"We had three games in six days and maybe I needed to change a few more players.

"Etienne had been in our thoughts and we wondered if this was the game for him. Jermaine Johnson was poor tonight. He was ineffective."

Date:Friday September 18 2009
Time: 10:48PM

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that write up is bull*****. makes your chances sound great and doesnt mention ours. doent say that we were the better side who showed more quality. and you just lumped it forward didnt really threat, but i have to agree with the purse and buxton comment. there well below par. and blackwell can swivel saying you were superb first half. we made you look good going forward
19/09/2009 08:39:00
Regardless of all that they won Smiggy, our inability to defend cost us, congrats you lot, enjoy long til the return?
19/09/2009 10:12:00
Well said robc, credit where credits due. Congratulations to you lot last night. Good game of football and it must have been a great game for the neutral! Do you guys play good football? No. Do you guys really care? Not really. I have to admit, If Wednesday play direct and it gets results and puts us around the promotion places then I wouldnt mind at all. Buxton and Purse really are our weak links. Well done guys anyway. Hope the game at Hillsborough is just as good!
19/09/2009 10:28:00
thats what has peeved me the most, we gifted them the goals with our useless defending. purse the leader, the guy 7 minutes into a derby you would expect to win the first header, not get lost under the flight and lose your man. and buxton is just a joke
19/09/2009 10:53:00
Mornin lads, I see the usual deluded oinkers are retaliating early, shame their team cant get off the mark as quickly. They were TOTALLY over run in the first half but Blades thought it was too easy and went to sleep in the second half. Laws was in danger of making himself look a complete fool after his childish pre match attempts at winding Blackwell up but his team saved him with their second half effort. A creditable attempt to salvage a bit of pride, but United made it more difficult for themselves than it should have been. Anyway, just another three points, no big deal.
19/09/2009 11:30:00
Hey Sheps, I think putting that donkey Buxton on the MOTM voting is a bit cruel.....
19/09/2009 11:35:00
Quote Mr Laws Jermaine Johnson was poor tonight. He was ineffective thats coz walker battered him for pace, as for the game, well if ever there was a gameof 2 halfs, a great game spoiled by a poor ref to happy to wave yellows. booked morgs for foot up, when TooGay was doing it all game. that said we were comfortable for the last 10 mins and should have scored more. but 3points is 3 points.UP THE BLADES
19/09/2009 13:04:00
lol Glouc come of it
19/09/2009 14:45:00
wesp...come off what? Fact, an easy win was made difficult by ourselves. Lots of pretty pretty passing means nothing if your back four are poor and you dont get the ball in the box. Nice strike by Tudgay, a player much too good to be at crumbling swillsboro, and super set piece - which Paddy would have had - but you know as well as we do that had Killa been playing you wouldnt have got anywhere near us. As I said, 3 points, no big deal. Sheffield hierarchy restored.
19/09/2009 18:09:00
''TOTALLY overrun in the first half'' the first half was pretty even, you shaded it derserved to be ahead because of better commitment and OUR DEFENCE making it difficult for ourselves, 1 questionably 2 ogs and a scrappy opener that should have been cleared. Second half we played football (as opposed to rugby), on one hand we deserved a draw but when you defend as comically as we did in first half on the other hand guess we didn't. Reyght game though, and thats 2 ogs in 2 Sheffield derbys from Buxton, swear he's a Blade
19/09/2009 18:26:00
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