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Match Reports

U23s REPORT: Barnsley 1-3 Huddersfield

16 February 2018

Two second half goals from Alex Pritchard were enough to seal a 3-1 victory for Huddersfield Town.

Barnsley took an early lead through Victor Adeboyejo before Rarmani Edmonds-Green levelled for the visitors. But it was Pritchard, a £12m January signing from Norwich City, who proved to be the match winner with two superb strikes after the interval.

The 24-year-old is cup-tied for Huddersfield’s FA Cup clash with Manchester United on Saturday, having featured for the Canaries in their third round tie with Chelsea on 6 January.
 
New Reds Head Coach José Morais was also in attendance at the Oakwell Training Ground, after he took charge of first team training earlier in the day.
 
It was Barnsley, under the charge of Martin Devaney, who started the brighter, and almost broke the deadlock just seven minutes in as Louis Walsh danced his way down the right flank. The tricky winger found Kane Swinburn on the edge of the box, but his low drive struck the foot of the post.
 
The hosts continue to press and eventually got the reward their early dominance deserved when Adeboyejo rose highest to nod the ball home after Amir Berkovits’ initial shot had been blocked.
 
That goal seemed to spark Huddersfield into life, with Pritchard at the heart of everything productive the Terriers did. The former Brentford midfielder took aim twice from distance, only to narrowly miss the target on both occasions.
 
Goalkeeper Jake Greatorex was rarely troubled in the first half, but reacted quickly to tip Dominic Tear’s fierce low shot wide to keep the Reds in front.
 
But, from the resulting corner, Edmonds-Green leapt highest to power a header into the bottom corner to level the scores five minutes before half-time.
 
Barnsley reacted well to that set-back and almost retook the lead moments later through Berkovits. The impressive Walsh burst forward once more and fired an inviting ball across the goal mouth, but Berkovits was unable to find the target as his shot flashed narrowly wide of the far post.
 
It was a similar story six minutes after the break as the two wingers combined once more, but Berkovits couldn’t get enough purchase on the ball as the Terriers survived another scare.
 
The Reds would go onto rue those missed opportunities as Huddersfield raced through the gears, with nemesis-in-chief Pritchard pulling the strings.
 
Visiting striker Rekeil Pyke forced a brilliant save from Greatorex as the Barnsley stopper acrobatically tipped a dipping shot over the bar.
 
But Pritchard’s Premier League quality shone through as he whipped a ferocious strike into the top corner just before the hour mark to put the visitors in front.
 
Huddersfield then put the game beyond Barnsley’s reach with 20 minutes to go as Pritchard rounded off a flowing team move with an audacious chip from the edge of the area.
 
The scoreline was perhaps harsh on the young Reds, who were undone by two moments of brilliance, but there were plenty of positives to take from the game despite defeat.
 
 
Reds XI: Greatorex, Wardle, Williams, Tingle (Smith, 67), Barrett, Lund (c), Walsh, Vince (Ocran, 60), Adeboyejo, Swinburn, Berkovits
 
Not used: Kendrick, Rowe, Clare
 
Huddersfield XI: Schofield, Williams, O’Malley, High, Edmonds-Green, Stankovic (Crichlow-Noble, 46), Booty, O’Brien, Tear, Pyke (Dyson, 61), Pritchard (Rowe, 75)
 
Not used: Mewitt, Obiero

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