Date: Saturday, 30th December 1967.

Venue: Elland Road, Leeds.

Competition: First Division.

Score: Leeds United 3 Sheffield Wednesday 2

Scorers: Leeds United: Greenhoff, Gray, Hunter. Sheffield Wednesday: Ritchie, Witham.

Attendance: 36,409.


Leeds United: Sprake; Reaney, Cooper; Bremner, Charlton, Hunter; Greenhoff, Madeley, Jones, Giles, Gray.

Sheffield Wednesday: Springett; Smith, Megson; Mobley, Ellis, Branfoot; Witham, Symm, Ritchie, McCalliog, Usher.

Referee: Mr D.A. Corbett (Wolverhampton).

Norman Hunter had his moments as a goal-scorer, but not very often, in a long and distinguished career with Leeds United, but one such occasion was against Sheffield Wednesday in December 1967. The England defender, who actually scored twenty-one league and cup goals in seven hundred and twenty-four first team outings with Leeds, put the skids under the Owls when United beat them 3-2 in the final game of 1967 at Elland Road.

United took the lead after a quarter of an hour when Mick Jones, who had been signed from Sheffield United just three months earlier, laid the foundations with a run on the left in which he weaved his way past two defenders before cutting in to supply Jimmy Greenhoff with a simple point-blank scoring chance in front of goal. United pressed hard to increase their advantage but Wednesday stood firm repelling a number of attacks before United found a way through the defence again in the thirty-eighth minute. Greenhoff failed to reach another pass from Jones and when Billy Bremner took up possession he lofted the ball back for Eddie Gray to head past Peter Springett in the Wednesday goal and sent United in at the break two goals to the good.

Ian Branfoot twice had a go at goal for the visitors and considering the wet pitch both sides were managing to play some good football. Wednesday were battling hard and big John Ritchie put them back in the game when he scored in the sixty-fifth minute. Don Megson crossed from the left and Ritchie bundled the ball in after Ian Branfoot’s shot had been blocked. Jim McCalliog tested Gary Sprake to the full a couple of minutes later with a cross shot that the keeper managed to parry to safety. The Owls were staging a forceful rally and they reaped the reward when lively winger Jack Whitham levelled the scores at 2-2, beating Sprake with a sudden low shot from fifteen yards. Then Hunter entered the fray with his last gasp winner.

The goal, which came in the final two minutes of the match, was described in the YEP as having come ‘like a giant electric shock’ to the crowd and ‘more like a nuclear explosion’ to Wednesday. Johnny Giles rolled a free-kick to Hunter, who ran on to it at full speed to smash a first time shot into the Wednesday net. Not even a John Charles’ drive went in like that shot, it was claimed. Whatever the merits of the shot were, the goal earned United their second victory over Wednesday inside five days, following a 1-0 win at Hillsborough, thanks to a Johnny Giles penalty. It sent United into third place in the First Division, four points behind leaders Manchester United and just one adrift from second placed Liverpool.


The goal-scorers:



Leeds United: Jimmy Greenhoff              Norman Hunter                           Mick Jones



Sheffield Wednesday: John Ritchie           Jack Witham