Date: Wednesday, 7th March 1973.

Venue: Elland Road, Leeds.

Competition: European Cup-Winnersí Cup, Third Round, First Leg.

Score: Leeds United 5 Rapid Bucharest 0.

Scorers: Leeds United: Giles, Clarke, Lorimer (2), Jordan. Rapid Bucharest: Nil.

Attendance: 25,702.


Leeds United: Harvey; Reaney, Cherry; Bremner, McQueen (Yorath), Hunter; Lorimer, Clarke, Jordan, Giles, Madeley.

Rapid Bucharest: Raducanu; Pop, Grigorias; Codrea, Stelian, Musat; Nasturescu (Naom), Savu, Neagu, Florin, Dumitriu..

Referee: Bohumil Smejkal (Czechoslovakia).


United had little trouble in disposing of their Romanian opponents, which was a welcome relief after the close first two rounds. Gordon McQueen was given a European debut as Jack Charlton was injured, and the other young Scot, Joe Jordan, filled in for Mick Jones.


The Romanians simply did not have the answer to Unitedís speed and skill as they were swept away by a tidal wave of attacking play. Don Revie had enlisted the help of Veteran Tottenham Manager Bill Nicholson in his preparations for the game. Spurs had whipped Rapid 5-0 in the same competition in the previous season and Nicholson sent Revie a dossier on how to play the men from Bucharest. Whatever gems of information the report contained it certainly did the trick as United matched the Londonerís comprehensive score-line.


Rapid seemed to employ dubious tactics from the outset, announcing that they would play in all-white. That cut no ice with United, who, as the home team, wore their own colours and Rapid reluctantly agreed to play in red. When the game started Rapidís Alexandru Grigorias and Marin Florin only seemed content to clatter into Leeds players, but United rode above such strong-arm tactics to take a fifteenth minute lead. Johnny Giles had already gone close from twelve yards when goalkeeper Necula Raducanu made a mess of punching clear and the little Irishman collected the ball and chipped it over the stricken goalkeeper.


Ten minutes later Norman Hunter launched an attack from his own half and the ball was played forward by Johnny Giles to Joe Jordan who headed it on for Allan Clarke to score with ease. United were carving Rapid open at will and the third goal arrived after thirty-three minutes. Allan Clarkeís pass released Peter Lorimer, who converted from ten yards and it looked like the floodgates had opened, but there were no more goals before half-time.


Without overstretching themselves United added a fourth five minutes after the break as Peter Lorimer got his second with a trademark thunderbolt after fifty-six minutes and nine minutes later Joe Jordan rounded off the scoring with Unitedís fifth to get the goal that his excellent all-round play deserved after Allan Clarkeís clever footwork had confused the Rapid defence. After that United eased up a bit knowing that their passage through to the last four was virtually assured and the return leg in Romania seemed as if it was just a formality.



Match Action:






Johnny Giles, Allan Clarke, Peter Lorimer (2) and Joe Jordan scored the five United goals.

Gordon McQueen was given an European debut.