Haven't We Met Before? Leeds United
Saturday 25th February 1989
Leeds Utd 0-0 Swindon Town
Boss Lou Macari recalled full-back Phil King after a 7-match absence for the trip to Yorkshire. King had originally been serving a three-match suspension but the good form of Paul Bodin had kept the former Torquay man on the sidelines. Macari kept faith in Bodin by moving him to left midfield as Town faced up to a rejuvenated Leeds side, under new manager Howard Wilkinson.
Leeds had been steadily rising up the table and with only one defeat in their last nine at Elland Road, many felt Town would have their work cut out to get anything from this encounter.
What's more, Swindon had never won at Leeds. Just one draw - the first time the teams met in 1963 - followed by a couple of defeats up till now.
Leeds pretty much ran the game. If it wasn't for Town having a bit of backbone they may well have ended up on the receiving end like most of the visitors to Elland Road had in the past five months.
With Colin Calderwood and Jon Gittens putting a stranglehold on the 25-goal pairing of Bobby Davison & Ian Baird, and Ross MacLaren sweeping up everything else, Town were able to restrict Leeds to only an occasional sight of goal.
In fact, despite Leeds dominating play and possession, Town weren't without their chances. Alan McLoughlin's 34th minute through ball sent Duncan Shearer racing away only to see his tremendous shot flash over Mervyn Day and clip the bar before going over.
The closest Leeds came to a winner in the second half was when substitute Mark Aizlewood's header smacked a post with Fraser Digby beaten.
Aizlewood, brother of former Town centre-half Steve, was left cursing his luck along with 22,000 others as it began to dawn on the home faithful they were about to drop two points.
It very nearly got worse for Leeds. Two minutes from time there was a real heart in the mouth moment when Tom Jones' shot beat Day and ran across the goalline, almost in slow motion. The ball somehow missed a late lunge by Shearer and the collective audience breathed out a huge sigh of relief.
Following this encounter Town put together a splendid run, losing only 2 of their last 17 games. They shot up the table and finished in 6th spot.
The Leeds charge faltered towards the end of the season. They finished 10th, a good nine points behind Swindon.
M.Day, N.Aspin, G.Snodin (M.Aizlewood 73), M.Adams, N.Blake, D.Rennie, D.Batty, J.Sheridan, I.Baird (J.Pearson 73), B.Davison, V.Hilaire.
F.Digby, D.Hockaday, P.Bodin, T.Jones, C.Calderwood, J.Gittens, D.Shearer, A.McLoughlin, S.White, R.MacLaren, P.King.
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