BARNSLEY 1 (Colace 37)
SHEFFIELD UNITED 0
Saturday December 11, 2010, KO 3.00pm
HUGO Colace's first goal of the season was enough but the Reds could and should have won by more in a one sided South Yorkshire derby at Oakwell.
Reds boss Mark Robins made just one change from the side that was held by Watford a fortnight ago with Nathan Doyle returning to anchor the midfield alongside Hugo Colace. Diego Arismendi dropped to the bench while Garry O'Connor started the final match of his loan spell from Birmingham City.
O'Connor went into the match on a high after agreeing a permanent switch to Oakwell but will not be able to play again after today until the transfer window opens on January 1, 2011. The striker's contract with Birmingham ends this weekend but, as he was not a free agent when the August window closed, he will not be able to play for the Reds until it re-opens in January. Unfortunately FIFA's transfer window rules mean O'Connor must watch from the sidelines until the New Year's Day trip to Nottingham Forest.
United were missing ex-Reds Daniel Bogdanovic and Chris Morgan but there was a surprise place on the bench for former Oakwell full back Rob Kozluk.
It was the visitors who settled the quicker, forcing an early corner as Mark Yeates attacked Kieran Trippier down the left flank. Leon Britton then saw a shot deflect through to Luke Steele on three minutes while Jim O'Brien almost got in at the other end seconds later as he raced onto Doyle's fine pass but was flagged offside when he really shouldn't have drifted beyond Andy Taylor.
O'Connor drilled one against Nyron Nosworthy on six minutes while Doyle was harshly judged to have fouled Andy Reid seconds later. The foul was given by referee Michael Jones while assistant Sian Massey kept her flag down despite being just yards away.
Goran Lovre bought a needless foul from Nick Montgomery on nine minutes to give Adam Hammill his first chance to shoot from a 25 yards free kick. Hammill's effort beat the wall but flew high over the bar. Taylor's cynical trip on O'Brien stopped the winger breaking free on 13 minutes but nothing came from Trippier's free kick. Taylor escaped without a card as well.
Hammill then did brilliantly to outsmart and embarrass the Blades defence on 15 minutes and O'Connor was only inches away from getting his head to the winger's fine cross. Doyle then let fly as the United backline rocked but his goalbound thunderbolt was fortuitously blocked before it could hit the target.
O'Brien had United at sixes and sevens on 17 minutes as he tricked his way into the area but was tripped right on the line by Jean Calve. Hammill's quick fre kick was brilliantly worked by Jason Shackell missed his kick and a certain goal from ten yards.
Shackell was then harshly penalised for a foul on Reid on 21 minutes despite clearly playing the ball. Again the decision was given by the referee when his assistant was stood a foot or so away. United played the free kick back to Taylor but his 30 yarder was more of a danger to the Blades fans in the North Stand than Luke Steele's goal. Ched Evans threatened briefly moments later as he broke onto Stephen Foster's slip but his shot just about went out for a goalkick by the corner flag. Yeates ran into Trippier to win a free kick on the edge of the box on 26 minutes as United found a little momentum but the winger's low effort never beat the wall.
With O'Brien leading the Blades a merry dance, the Reds were always looking dangerous. The Scot lashed one a foot or so over on the half hour after United had struggled to clear Hammill's corner. Wright then again looked to waste time by running to the edge of the area to give a verbal volley to his defenders for the second time in the game. He should have been booked.
Trippier did pick up a yellow seconds later after sending Yeates flying. The Reds were denied a stonewall penalty on 32 minutes as Hammill raced into the area only to be barged over by Nosworthy. If it wasn't a spot kick then referee Jones should have booked Hammill for diving. He just gave a goal kick.
Everything United did came through Yeates. The winger blazed well, well wide on 36 minutes as he found a yard of space on the edge of the area.
The opening goal came from a moment of quick thinking as Trippier's throw sent O'Brien away down the right flank. The winger crossed well and Hugo Colace was in the right place at the right time to slam the ball home.
United went close to a equaliser on 40 minutes as Yeates let fly but his dipped effort clipped the bar and flew over. Hammill then brought a save from Wright on 43 minutes before Colace was booked for what appeared to be a perfectly good albeit strong challenge on Johnny Ertl.
O'Connor talked himself into a yellow card on 50 minutes after protesting at some rough treatment by the United defence on the edge of the area. Nothing though came from Hammill's free kick.
It was almost two on 53 minutes as O'Connor's cross embarrassed Nosworthy in the air but Shackell could not react quickly enough to prod home although he was caught a little surprise after the ball dropped to him.
Hammill burst into life in the second half. He raced past the Sheffield United defence on 59 minutes to bring a fine, fine save from substitute keeper Steve Simonsen. Hammill's delivery from the resulting corner was inch perfect for Goran Lovre to attack but the midfielder could not get his powerful header on target.
United were struggling in attack. Evans blazed well over on 61 minutes after Steele had been blocked off as he went for Yeates' corner. Reid then totally lost it as Doyle failed to hand possession back to United from a drop ball and kicked it out of play.
Simonsen came to United's rescue on 64 minutes as he somehow turned Hassell's thunderbolt away from the bottom corner after a fast flowing passing move on the edge of the area had the Blades chasing shadows.
The Reds had a golden chance to bury United on 71 minutes as O'Brien freed Trippier but the full back blazed his cross high into the stand with players waiting for a tap in.
United's were frustrated at their inability to wrestle the initiative from a solid and determined Barnsley. Yeates was booked on 73 minutes for clattering through O'Brien. O'Brien then slammed a shot high over as he easily cut past a half hearted challenge 30 yards from goal moments later.
O'Brien again had the United defence all over the shop on 77 minutes as he found space to cross but Hammill's low shot was well blocked. Lovre just could not get an effort away on the rebound.
Hammill then made Blades substitute Matt Lawton ridiculous on 82 minutes as he raced onto his own flick before being hauled down by the youngster. Lawton was rightly shown a yellow card.
Jamie Ward then wasted a great chance to get his side level on 84 minutes as he beat the Reds defence to a long punt forward but opted to cross rather than shoot. Linesman Darren Cann was nowhere near play and should have flagged the Blades frontman offside though.
Barnsley should have been well clear on 88 minutes as Doyle and Lovre did brilliantly to free O'Connor but the striker could only shoot straight at Simonsen.
Sheffield United finally had a sight of goal in stoppage time as Yeates broke away from Hassell but was denied easily by Steele at his near post.
BARNSLEY: Steele, Trippier, Foster, Shackell, Hassell, O'Brien, Colace, Doyle, Hammill, Lovre (Hayes 90), O'Connor.
Subs: Preece, Gray, Butterfield, Neumann, Bennett, Arismendi.
SHEFFIELD UNITED: Wright (Simonsen 53), Nosworthy, Montgomery, Ertl (Lawton 64), Britton, Evans, Yeates, Calve (Ward 75), Taylor, Bartley, Reid.
Subs: Kozluk, Batth, Quinn, Slew.
Michael Jones (Cheshire)
Darren Cann (Norfolk) and Sian Massey (Coventry)
Kevin Wright (Cambridgeshire)
Attendance - 12,976
Away Attendance - 2,005
House Of Fraser Man Of The Match - Nathan Doyle
Match Report by Rob Knowles.
"We have been match sponsors numerous times and have thoroughly enjoyed the hospitality that Barnsley Football Club offer. We would have no hesitation in recommending businesses to take advantage of a sponsorship package this season. Since getting involved with Barnsley FC the awareness of our business has risen significantly."
Kevin Beckett, C K Beckett
COMMERCIAL BROCHURE 2010-2011
CLICK HERE FOR TICKET INFORMATION FROM OAKWELL!!!
CLICK HERE TO SHOP ONLINE
©WWW.BARNSLEYFC.CO.UK 2010 RNK
GET THE EXCLUSIVES FIRST - Subscribers to our official SMS service are the first to hear all the big news from inside Oakwell. Be the first to know about all the latest exclusive news from Oakwell next time by signing up to our text service today - click here for more.
Try mobile.barnsleyfc.co.uk - The official website is now available on your phone, for when you're on the move.