Keith Treacey rescued a point for Sheffield United tonight with a stunning effort from 25 yards with his wrong foot.
The Blades struggled for the first hour and went behind from a deflected free-kick but Treacy’s speculative effort was enough to rescue a point an preserve the undefeated start for both clubs.
A crowd of 26,000 for the Tuesday night encounter which was helped by an excellent following from a the vocal City fans. Leicester pressed the Blades early on, and from the first few minutes it was evident that this would be a very different performance to Saturday’s relatively simple victory over Watford.
Free flowing football frustrated the Blades, who were hurried whenever they had the ball and possession was often given away cheaply. Fryatt had an effort blocked by Bunn before being put through one-on-one, but again failed to beat the on loan stopper who raced out of his goal to prevent the Foxes striker.
The Blades first chance came after some interplay in the area, Evans and Ward combining to set up Henderson, whose effort was deflected onto the crossbar.
The referee issued a number of bookings in the first half; Taylor and Howard for the Blades, the impressive Wellens for City.
The second half continued in a similar way to the first, until City took the lead. Oakley’s twenty five yard free kick was deflected by Fryatt, wrong-footing Bunn to put Leicester in front.
It could have been two soon after, Bunn saved low from Oakley, and Taylor was on hand with a last ditch tackle on Waghorn.
With the Blades behind, changes were imminent, Kyle Reid was stripped off and ready for action as Taylor burst down the left. The ex Tranmere laid off for Treacy who cut in and unleashed an unstoppable effort into the top corner, leaving Weale without a chance.
The last twenty minutes saw a familiar sight for United fans, balls in the box and half chances wasted. The closest they came was a free kick shortly after the goal which substitute Stephen Quinn forced Weale to tip over. Despite the pressure, United failed to penetrate the Foxes goal and had to settle for a point.
Worried the fans when it appeared he picked up a knock in the first half, and conceded his first goal in a United shirt, but with Kenny facing an absence he could see his month’s deal extended.
Last season’s honeymoon may be over, and despite a good performance, the negatives may be becoming more apparent. The most obvious being Walker not knowing exactly when to get rid of the ball. It’s good to see him explode down the wing but there are times when he tries to beat one man too many.
More of the same from Morgan, who had to listen to the Foxes fans ‘questioning’ his sexual preferences… like that will bother him!
The most encouraging thing about Kilgallon, which sets him apart from Morgan is his distribution. If he’s in possession out wide, ‘Killa’ looks for a free player rather than just Henderson, and this performance was excellent by the ex Leeds man.
Despite a tumble in front of his own goal, Taylor impressed with a pretty solid display and his run created the space for Treacy’s goal.
I can’t help but feel that Ward is wasted in this unorthadox right wing position. By coming inside so often it means that pace is added to a fairly stale frontline, but when Walker is in possession, Ward disappearing leaves him without an outlet.
Monty could be a candidate for Man of the Match after a solid battling display (I might keeep that in for the whole season). However, as I stated last year, as we chased the game and required some composure in the opposition half, Montgomery’s flaws are exposed.
Kevin Blackwell revealed after the game that Howard was suffering from tonsillitis, and on this display it showed. I’ve tried to defend Howard since his arrival, and his displays against Preston in the playoffs were excellent, but his showing tonight was absolutely abysmal. Due to my forgiving nature, we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.
A magnificent goal capped off an adequate display by Treacy. In the first half he frustrated, as he opted to just help the ball on through the air, but as the game moved into the second half, when he brought the ball down, he looked very impressive indeed.
Like Howard, I’ve tried to defend Henderson, but the showing tonight was simply not good enough. He won very little in the air, and his passing was woeful. Billy Sharp, despite some lackluster performances in the past could/should have replaced the ineffective Henderson with around half an hour remaining.
A quiet display from the ex Man City man. Very rarely in the game, and his frustration was shown when he passed the ball to Weale in the final moments from thirty five yards, when fellow Welshman Cotterill was screaming for the ball in a much better position.
On for Howard: Half Time.
Not ideal, but a slightly improved performance after missing a game and a half (almost).
On for Treacy: 73
On for Ward: 88