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Matches
3 February 2010 - Leeds United 1 Tottenham Hotspur 3
FA Cup fourth round replay - Elland Road - 37,704
Scorers: Becchio (45 mins)
Leeds United: Ankergren, Bromby, Michalik, Naylor, Hughes (White 76), Snodgrass, Howson, Doyle, Johnson (Crowe 86), Becchio (Grella 86), Beckford
Tottenham Hotspur: Gomes, Corluka, Bassong, Dawson, Bale, Bentley, Huddlestone, Kranjcar, Jenas, Defoe, Crouch

United fan Alan Fawcett celebrates the draw at White Hart Laneprinter friendly version

The Renaissance of Leeds United was gathering genuine pace during the 2009/10 season after seven years of rapid decline. The reversal of fortunes was highlighted by some outstanding displays against Premier League opponents: Liverpool were narrow victors at Elland Road in the Carling Cup in September; Leeds achieved a memorable win at Old Trafford in the FA Cup third round at the beginning of January; and then followed up with some stirring defiance in the next round, against Tottenham Hotspur on the 23rd of the month, when two Jermaine Beckford goals at White Hart Lane earned a replay.

United's League form dipped badly during January, with the heady excitement of mixing it with top flight opponents an understandable distraction. Leeds' 2-0 defeat of promotion rivals Colchester on 30 January was their first League One victory of 2010. They had lost three of their previous five games, in the process falling three points behind leaders Norwich.

Promotion was United manager Simon Grayson's priority and the diversion of the FA Cup spotlight was somewhat unwelcome. Elland Road supporters pragmatically shared the manager's view, but the whiff of big time football was simply too intoxicating to turn up one's nose at.

Grayson said of the momentous victory against Manchester United: "It was a fantastic experience going there... No one expected us to win on this stage except perhaps 9,000 Leeds fans and the players and us in the dressing room... We said in the build up the players would sink or swim and they came out with plenty of credit. They can draw on that now and go on from there. Overall it was a great day for the club. We've done something which everyone can be immensely proud of."

The draw at White Hart Lane was equally thrilling, as acknowledged by Grayson: "It was a cracking atmosphere, they had a stronger team than Man U in the last round and it was a big result. It was well deserved... We said all along we have players who can create chances and finish, and it proved... I would rather have lost 4-1 than not having chased the game."

In the days before the Elland Road replay, Grayson added: "We have nothing to lose against Spurs. That would have been the case regardless of Saturday's result because our confidence and belief never waned when we were not winning over the last few weeks. We are still the underdogs but we go into the game with a good shout. My main focus is on next Saturday's game at Hartlepool but we are taking the replay seriously because we want to win through to the next round.

"We will put a team out against Tottenham that will hopefully compete and give a goodBattle of the Giants! Peter Crouch and Lubo Michalik tangle at Elland Road. The England striker had the best of the contest, dominating in the air account of themselves. We showed at White Hart Lane that we can play the ball around like them. If we beat them it will give us a major psychological boost because they are a top team.

"I will tell the players to go out and enjoy it really - the same as we did in the first game and at Old Trafford. Have no regrets when they come off the pitch and somebody try and be a hero. Jermaine has got a lot of headlines over the last couple of rounds. It would be nice for somebody else to get them for a change."

United were without their injured Australians, Paddy Kisnorbo and Neil Kilkenny, but otherwise at full strength, with the familiar attacking partnership of Beckford and Luciano Becchio in place. The giant Slovakian, Lubo Michalik, was recalled at centre-back to counter the aerial threat of Peter Crouch.

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Tottenham could also select from strength, despite the departure of Robbie Keane on loan to Celtic. England international David Bentley was given the opportunity to continue his revival on the right after being out of favour following a drink-driving conviction in the summer. Club captain Ledley King was rested while Wilson Palacios and Luka Modric were on the bench.

Despite a couple of hours of heavy snow falling prior to kick off, the pitch nevertheless looked in remarkably good condition when Tottenham kicked off at 7.45. They sought to make their early possession count, though United players were quickly in their faces, putting time and space at a premium.

The first chance fell to the visitors: Niko Kranjcar's raking pass out to Bentley on the right wing was intercepted by Andy Hughes, but his header back to Casper Ankergren was misjudged and short, offering Jermain Defoe the opportunity to get a shot in. His miscued effort bobbled goalwards but was cleared into touch by the alert Richard Naylor.

The Tottenham throw was intercepted by Bradley Johnson and hammered downfield to Beckford, who held play up well on the left flank before he cut inside to find Robert Snodgrass on the opposite wing. The Scot fed it back to Leigh Bromby, but the defender's cross was easily cleared away by Spurs.

Tottenham enjoyed some good possession in the Leeds half, but they could not fashion a clear opening and Becchio and Snodgrass broke out in tandem down the right to earn a throw deep in Spurs territory. Michalik came up for what promised to be a long throw by Bromby, but instead the ball was played short to Michael Doyle who fed Johnny Howson in the centre of the pitch. Tottenham were slow to get to the midfielder who tried a speculative curler which slipped wide of Heurelho Gomes' left hand post.

After five minutes, Kranjcar got possession after a Leeds attack broke down and hammered the ball forward for Defoe in the right channel. The England striker collected and fed Bentley to his right; the ball was transferred instantly forwardLuciano Becchio battles it out with Tottenham's Vedran Corluka to Jermaine Jenas who had run on towards the Leeds penalty area. Referee Andre Marriner awarded Spurs a free kick 30 yards from goal when the midfielder was fouled by Naylor as he sought to turn on the ball.

Bentley's dead ball attempt was headed out for a corner by Bromby on the edge of the Leeds wall. Bentley took the flag kick and found Sebastien Bassong in space in the heart of the area, but he chose to volley first time and the ball curled over the bar.

In the ninth minute Becchio and Snodgrass combined to bring Leeds forward again down the right flank, but Spurs broke up the move when it reached Howson.

Bentley made his way down the Tottenham right before firing a low ball across the six-yard line, but there were no Spurs takers for a promising pass which was cleared by Bromby for a corner.

A couple of minutes later, Crouch got in front of Michalik to chest down a Corluka cross for Defoe, whose instant strike from the edge of the area flashed narrowly past Ankergren's right hand post with the goalkeeper helpless.

Two more minutes and Leeds had their best opportunity thus far. Naylor won his tackle to feed Howson and the Leeds midfielder found Hughes to the left. There was no obvious pass on and the left-back took a risk as he dwelled on the ball, but retained possession and managed to get the ball back to Michalik. His hoofed clearance down the left was headed on by Johnson, who pressurised Corluka. A hasty Spurs clearance was cushion headed down carefully by Naylor for Becchio to hold up down the middle. The Argentinian fed Howson who tried to put Snodgrass clear on the right. The Scott was heavily marked and returned to Howson, whose centre was partially cleared by Dawson. The ball fell to Doyle, who got in a low left footed effort from ten yards outside the area but Gomes gathered low to his right.

Seconds later, Beckford went for a high ball forty yards from goal and was given the free kick after Dawson led with his elbow. It was a promising position Snodgrass' ball into the area was hopelessly overhit.

But Leeds were starting to settle into the game now and having some decent possession, though there was no obvious cutting edge in the final third.

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After 18 minutes, Bromby sent a long throw deep into the Tottenham area for Michalik and the ball dropped for Snodgrass to tease Gareth Bale. There was no way through and the Scot fed back out to Bromby whose dangerous cross dropped under the Spurs bar. Beckford got above the keeper and nodded onto the crossbar, but the referee awarded a free kick for the challenge on the keeper. It looked a harsh decision with Gomes flapping at the falling ball.

Tottenham sprang back into attack, with Bentley showing more good control in combination with Corluka on the right before being brought down by Johnson. Bentley took the free kick himself and floated it to Crouch at the far post. His header caused some anxiety but it was cleared by Becchio for a throw. Bentley's influence on proceedings was mounting by the second.

Leeds enjoyed a period of good pressure in the 24th minute but ended, ironically, Robert Snodgrass and Tottenham Hotspur's Niko Kranjcar battle for the ballin another Tottenham chance. Jenas was harried into a desperate long clearance, but it found Defoe in yards of space down the middle. He had time to pretty much do anything he wanted as he made his way unopposed to the edge of the area. Ankergren raced out to narrow the angle and Defoe chose to place his shot past him, but the keeper deflected the effort wide. It had been a golden opportunity.

After 26 minutes Kranjcar fed the overlapping Bale down the left and his whipped in cross looked dangerous. A deflection by Bromby only added to the threat and the ball was heading at pace inside Ankergren's near post but he showed lightning reflexes to change direction, get down and parry the ball away. It was a miraculous save.

Three minutes later, Leeds came with some concerted passing out of defence. Howson set Becchio up to bring the ball away from a number of challenges. He returned the ball to the advancing Howson who brought Snodgrass into play on the right. He sought to find Howson on the edge of the Spurs box, but the ball was inaccurate and allowed Bassong to make an easy clearance. David Bentley congratulates Jermain Defoe on his fortunate opening goal at Elland RoadHe could only find Doyle, though, and Snodgrass picked up the ball again to earn a throw on the right.

Bromby's throw was to Becchio with his back to goal and he turned away from a challenge to feed Beckford on the edge of the area in space between Corluka and Dawson. His attempted lay off for Snodgrass ran out to the right but Becchio got to it and tried a back heel. Bassong was on hand to clear downfield to Crouch. The beanpole striker held it up long enough to bring Kranjcar into play, and a delightful speared ball down the left flank put Jenas in the clear. He cut inside when he reached the box and stroked the ball inside but Defoe had overrun the pass and Crouch was short of it. Johnson was able to collect and come out calmly from the back. The midfielder strode forward and fed Beckford. He turned away from his man at half way and ran at the retreating defence, but a speculative chip from 25 yards sailed well over the bar.

After 30 minutes a long Spurs clearance was slightly deflected by a Leeds player and caught Michalik off balance. Defoe thus had another clear run in on goal, but he allowed the big Slovakian to catch him and went down under the pressure from behind. As Ankergren gathered the ball, Defoe claimed a free kick but referee Andre Marriner was not impressed.

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At the start of the 35th minute, Corluka's chip forward found Huddlestone in the Leeds box and he set up Defoe to hammer powerfully goalwards, but Ankergren was again able to match the quality of the strike and parry safely away.

It was clear, however, that Crouch and Defoe had the Leeds defence in their pockets and would eventually capitalise on one of the host of opportunities coming their way. The clever Tottenham midfielders had taken control of the game and were outclassing their United counterparts, who were having to rely exclusively on quick breaks.

Seconds later the pressure finally reaped its just harvest. Bentley tricked Hughes and left him for dead down the right before haring to the byline and cutting back for Defoe. The striker's initial touch was poor, sending the ball in the area, but he turned and swung into a shot. His contact was again not true, but the ball struck his shin and sliced into the far corner of the net. A better shot would probably have been blocked, but his skewed effort fooled both goalkeeper and defence and gave the visitors a deserved lead.

Leeds were stung by falling behind and responded robustly.

They had the opportunity of an instant reply with a free kick 35 yards from goal on the left. The drilled ball in from Bromby was met by Michalik's head and Gomes had to be smart to touch the ball out for the corner.

Snodgrass' flag kick and the follow ups caused some desperate Tottenham defending in and around their box and appeals for a penalty by Becchio as he was pushed to the turf. Seconds later, a last ditch block by Dawson was required to deny Bromby's strike a clear route to the net.

A minute later, Leeds had another opportunity when Howson's chip into the area was headed goalwards by Johnson, but there was no power in the effort which floated gently into the hands of Gomes.

Defoe had another opportunity when a Crouch header found him just outside the Leeds box. Replays confirmed he was offside, but the referee let him play on and the striker tried a cheeky instant chip from 20 yards but spooned it up for Ankergren to gather and send the home side away again.

A couple of Snodgrass crosses from the right increased the crowd's volume, though Spurs defenders dealt with them confidently enough. Leeds kept the pressure hard on the back four, however, and were pushing with some success as Johnson's low effort called Gomes into action with Becchio and Beckford waiting for any mistake.

As the game inched towards half time, they were unlucky not to get a penalty when Snodgrass wasLuciano Becchio leaps on the loose ball to draw United level against Tottenham tackled as he went outside Bale. He refused to go down but did earn the corner.

Snodgrass' centre was worked back out to the Scot on the right and when it came out, Howson hurled a ball forward to Beckford on the edge of the goal area. He spun into a wonderful shot from the right which was parried by Gomes but Becchio slid in to make no mistake at the back post and Leeds were back on terms.

It had been such an impressive response, and at that moment Spurs were rocking. The visitors could point justifiably to all their missed chances, but Leeds were suddenly in the ascendancy as the half time whistle went.

Tottenham came out having had a flea in the ear from manager Harry Redknapp and had the first chance of the second half, though Defoe's shot from the left sailed harmlessly out beyond the far post. He was closer in the fiftieth minute when he ran across the Leeds defence to fire in a shot that worried Ankergren before it dropped inches over his bar.

The visitors were laying siege to the United box now as they held good possession, probing carefully for a weakness.

Crouch should have done much better after 51 minutes when he reached Kranjcar's driven cross shot from the left. He slid in with the goal at his mercy but could only flick the ball wide of the post.

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There was a now rare Leeds opportunity in the 54th minute when the ball found Beckford five yards outside the Tottenham box. He held it well, got into a shooting chance and struck a low shot goalwards. Dawson deflected it narrowly wide of Gomes' left hand upright for a corner. The flag kick brought some anxious moments in the Spurs area before it was scrambled away.

Then good approach play by Snodgrass and a back flick from Beckford set up Becchio for an effort from the edge of the area, which Dawson deflected for another corner, though there were claims of handball. Michalik missed a clear opportunity at a header from the corner which dropped tamely to Gomes.

After 58 minutes, Dawson headed a Bentley corner goalwards only for Ankergren to tip over one handed. From the second flag kick, Bentley became the first man booked for a late challenge on Naylor as he sought to clear.

On the hour Defoe ran beyond the Leeds rearguard onto a through ball and was disappointed when he was adjudged offside. Television replays substantiated his feelings.

It was a clearer decision a few seconds later when Becchio chased a high ball down the other end of the field.

Crouch won another aerial challenge in the 63rd minute and Jenas set up Huddlestone just outside the area, but his power drive was wide.

A minute later, Bentley was fortunate when a rebound from Hughes fell into his path, but he capitalised wonderfully well, driving on for goal and his cracking shot forced Ankergren into a touch over the bar.

After 67 minutes, Tottenham broke forward in numbers after a Leeds attack broke down. Kranjcar played the ball on to Bale overlapping down the left. His low cross was slid home by Defoe, but the goal was chalked off for offside to the relieved cheers of the home supporters.

Within a minute Defoe had yet another opportunity. A high ball was touched down by Crouch on the edge of the area but Ankergren smothered Defoe's strike. The succession of wasted opportunities was becoming embarrassing for the England striker.

Becchio was chasing all the lost causes, keeping up United hopes and after Johnson intercepted a Tottenham’s Jermain Defoe snatches his second goalball down the left after 70 minutes, the Argentinian had an opportunity to give Leeds the lead. Johnson fed the ball on to Beckford, who turned inside Dawson and slipped the ball forward to Becchio, inside Bassong on the penalty spot. He tried to check to buy time, but with that the chance was lost as Dawson smashed the ball into touch.

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Finally, with just over a quarter of an hour remaining, Tottenham's pressing brought them more reward. A through ball into the area for Defoe looked inviting, but he hesitated a little, allowing Michalik to slide in and concede the corner. The flag kick was fed deep to Jenas, who worked it back to Bentley on the right. His telling ball, low across the goal area, was flicked by Defoe into the net to give Tottenham the lead.

In the 76th minute, Simon Grayson made his first change, bringing on Aidan White for Andy Hughes, with Johnson dropping to left-back.

Bale's low cross to the far post was meant for Crouch but Michalik did wonders to get to it first and allow Leeds to clear their lines. But it was anxious stuff now with tired Leeds legs giving way as Tottenham had them chasing shadows in midfield.

After 81 minutes, Johnson was booked for a late foul on Bentley as he cut inside him. A minute later, Beckford slid in to block a Corluka clearance and was also cautioned.

Bale's lofted cross to the back post saw Crouch soar above Michalik to nod the ball onto the crossbar. He had been leaning on the defender but got away with it.

With four minutes remaining, Jason Crowe and Mike Grella came off the bench for Johnson and Becchio in a last throw of the dice for Simon Grayson.

The 89th minute brought a Leeds free kick out on the right after Beckford had held play up and forced a Kranjcar handball. Bromby got his head to it in a crowded area but couldn't keep it down. It was a wonderful opportunity of an equaliser.

Four minutes of added time gave Leeds hope but Tottenham were retaining possession wonderfully well to run the clock down.

In the 92nd minute a ball down the left gave White Defoe completes his hat trick in injury timethe chance to run at the Spurs defence, but Corluka dealt expertly with him and Bentley was given the opportunity for another drive. Naylor crunched into a tackle on Crouch just outside the box to regain possession for Leeds.

Grella turned skillfully away from Corluka and Jenas to buy a free kick around halfway with 90 seconds remaining. Ankergren launched it deep into the Tottenham box with everybody forward but Dawson got it out of immediate danger and then Bale hammered it downfield. Defoe had a couple of yards on Doyle in the centre circle and kept his head, heading straight for goal. He moved the ball wide of Ankergren as the goalkeeper came out, effectively blocking any chance of a Doyle challenge and slotted home his third goal of the night to end the contest.

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It was a cruel finish to a memorable Cup run, but there was no disputing Tottenham's clear superiority on the night, their midfield players far too knowing.

Harry Polkey in the Guardian: "Beating Hartlepool away next Saturday is, in the greater scheme of things, more important to Leeds United than knocking Tottenham Hotspur out of the FA Cup, but no-one who saw this hugely committed and at times frantic Cup-tie could accuse the United players of harbouring their resources. As at Manchester United in the third round, and 10 days ago at White Hart Lane, the Yorkshire side produced a performance which both belied their League One status and suggested that if they do not get promoted this season, something at Elland Road will have gone very wrong. After all, they are not going to come up against finishers of the quality of Jermain Defoe, whose hat trick was his third of the season. The Spurs manager, Harry Redknapp, suggested afterwards that the England striker could have scored six and Bolton, their opponents in the next round, will be wary. But United created plenty of chances, and the result was in doubt until Defoe's third, deep into stoppage time."

Simon Grayson was understandably proud of his players' efforts when he said afterwards, "We were very good again. We passed the ball around well and competed ever so well against a top team in the Premier League. That's all we said to the players - give a good account of yourself and do yourselves justice. Nobody Jonny Howson in action against Spursexpected us to win apart from maybe 33,000 inside the ground and the players, but we like to think we've come out of it with a lot of credit.

"We've been to Old Trafford and won there, we had a great performance at White Hart Lane and again on Wednesday against Tottenham. The players have to take a lot from it, and the fans were outstanding as well.

"The players can take a lot of heart and use it as inspiration to get better and better. I have a group of players who can play in the Championship and beyond. A lot are young and they are only going to get better. The infrastructure here is ready to go and the fan base is there to take off so we have every incentive.

"We said before the game 'Do yourselves justice and give the fans something to shout about' and they did that. I thought we were outstanding. We tried to get an equaliser at 2-1, and put up a real fight.

"Tottenham are a great team and we've given them two great games. Casper made some good saves and in the first half we caused them problems with the way we passed it. It was a great response from the players and the fans and we got back into it. We gave it a go in the second and the players can be proud of themselves."

Harry Redknapp was understandably pleased to be through, and acknowledged the fight put up by Leeds: "This is a massive football club, the atmosphere was absolutely incredible, but they have been getting 25,000 and 26,000 every week. It is a club that belongs in the Premier League, and they need to get back to where they should be. They will certainly get promoted this year, and I think they will be back in the top flight in the next few years."

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