Date: Wednesday 28th April 1982.
Villa 1 Leeds United 4
Villa: Geddis. Leeds United:
Graham, Worthington (2), Connor.
Aston Villa: Rimmer; Swain, Williams; Ormsby, McNaught,
Blair; Bremner, Geddis,
Withe, Cowans, Morley (Walters).
Leeds United: Lukic;
Hird, F. Gray; Flynn, Hart, Cherry; E. Gray, Graham, Worthington,
United gave their fight against relegation a major boost with a resounding 4-1
success over the European Cup Finalists Aston Villa in a night clash at Villa Park in April 1982. The victory earned by
early goals from Arthur Graham, two from Frank Worthington and one from Terry
Connor, lifted Allan Clarke’s side out of the First Division bottom three. With
matches in hand over their fellow strugglers, hopes were high on the return
journey to Elland Road that relegation could now be
avoided, hopes that were dashed as United won only one and picked up just five
points in their next six matches.
Arthur Graham equalized two minutes from half-time the game looked like taking a
very different course from what it eventually did. Villa boosted by a fiercely
struck goal from David Geddis, deputising
for England Under-Twenty-One striker Gary Shaw, seemed to have things very much
under control. Jimmy Rimmer in the Villa goal did not
have a shot to save until the thirty-sixth minute, when Frank Worthington
managed a header on target, but within minutes of that, Arthur Graham floated
the ball over the keeper and into the net from twenty yards.
went on to crack home three fine goals in a fourteen minute spell after the
break and made the game one to remember for those faithful fans who had made
the long journey. Young striker Terry Connor surged past three defenders in the
forty-seventh minute to serve up a chance for Frank Worthington to sweep the
ball into the unguarded net from a few yards. Eight minutes later Worthington scored his sixth goal in twelve
appearances when he collected a rebound after Frank Gray’s free-kick came back
off Villa’s defensive ‘wall’. In the sixty-fourth minute Peter Barnes left Gary
Williams reeling and played in Terry Connor, who crowned a first-class
performance with a goal. Villa may have been pre-occupied with their upcoming
European Cup Final with Bayern Munich but United had
the satisfaction of knowing every man had played a full part in the victory.
was very taken by the performance of Peter Barnes and commented, “Towards the
end of the season, Peter produced one of the best performances I have ever seen
from any Leeds player in a 4-1 win at Aston Villa.
With his explosive pace and ability on the ball he was unstoppable that night.”
Reports (Courtesy Mark Ledgard)
were stunned by a superb revival as Leeds fought for their First Division
lives in this game. Villa had taken a ninth minute lead through stand-in
striker David Geddis, but they had no answer to a
Leeds comeback which intensified the relegation pressure on midland neighbours Wolves, Birmingham and West Brom.
David Geddis could not earn himself a regular place
in the Villa side and was seeking a move, but his scoring record reached an
impressive nine in fifteen appearances. He took his shooting chance with
supreme confidence after missing an earlier opportunity to open his account.
The opening was created by a shot from Gordon Cowans,
which goalkeeper John Lukic found too hot to handle.
The loose ball fell into Geddis’ path and he rifled
it into the net. It ought to have put Villa on course for an eighth successive
home win in a season which had burst into life after a poor start, but Leeds,
their illustrious eighteen year spell in the First Division in serious
jeopardy, equalized with a superb goal from Arthur Graham in the forty-third
minute. The Scot danced his way around a wall of Villa defenders before
steering his right foot shot around Jimmy Rimmer. It
was some compensation for Leeds,
who had Trevor Cherry and Frank Worthington booked for offences which captured
the frustrations they were suffering after just one victory in nine games.
were fortunate not to concede a penalty just before half-time when Brendon Ormsby clumsily brought
down Terry Connor, found themselves a goal behind in the fifty-third minute
when Terry Connor beat Ken Swain and crossed from the right to present Frank
Worthington with a simple far-post tap-in for his fifth goal in twelve games.
The Leeds recovery went a stage further two
minutes later when Worthington scored again. The former England centre-forward blazed in a shot
from just outside the penalty area. Villa’s embarrassment became even more
acute in the sixty-third minute when a defence which
had conceded only one goal in its previous six games was breached for the
fourth time in the match. Peter Barnes crossed from the right and Terry Connor
was unmarked in front of goal to head home a simple chance. The Leeds win
pushed Wolves and West Brom into twentieth and
twenty-first places in the survival dogfight and they had two games in hand
over Ian Greaves’ Molineux side.
United scoring four times in twenty-one minutes, made an unexpected surge out
of the relegation zone by inflicting Aston Villa’s heaviest defeat since their
last match for Ron Saunders in February. Leeds, in danger of surrendering First Division
status after eighteen largely successful years, cracked in the ninth minute.
John Lukic pushed out a shot from Gordon Cowans and David Geddis accepted
a simple chance for his ninth goal in fifteen matches that season. Although
Peter Barnes proved his ability to out-wt Ken Swain on several occasions, Leeds failed to take advantage initially
of Villa’s struggle to cope with three enforced changes to their European Cup
Leeds revealed some tension when Trevor
Cherry was booked for deliberate handling and Frank Worthington for dissent.
But Arthur Graham, on the left of the penalty area, punished a defensive error
to level the score with a shot skillfully curved round Jimmy Rimmer after forty-two minutes. Leeds shook Villa with two goals from Frank
Worthington early in the second half. He tapped in a close range shot from
Terry Connor’s pass across the goalmouth after forty-eight minutes and then
struck home a twenty-five yard shot after a fifty-fifth minute free-kick from
Frank Gray rebounded from Villa’s defensive wall. Villa’s composure
disintegrated completely and Leeds went into a 4-1 lead with a header by Terry
Connor from Peter Barnes’ cross after sixty-five minutes. The introduction of
Mark Walters, a seventeen year-old England Youth International, came too late
to revive hapless Villa. They should have gone further behind when Frank
Worthington missed a hat-trick chance.
Arthur Graham, Frank Worthington (2) and Terry Connor got the Leeds goals.
David Geddis scored
Brendan Ormsby and Gary Williams both played
for Leeds later in their careers
He later coached at Leeds
Frank Gray’s free-kick led to the third
goal Peter Barnes gave an Jimmy Rimmer was one of the few regular
first team players.
Gary Shaw, Peter Withe
and others were rested for the European final