Drogs Hold Leeds To Draw

Last updated : 21 March 2005 By Kevin Markey
The Whites took a first half lead when Julian Joachim scored but an Alan Reilly second half penalty brought the Drogs level.

Gary Kelly was Leeds captain on his return to his home town club.

The match was staged in conjunction with the Gary Kelly Cancer Support Centre in Drogheda.

A second half penalty from midfielder Reilly helped eircom League Premier Division side Drogheda United hold Leeds to a draw in Sunday afternoon’s charity friendly at United Park.

The game saw a crowd of around 4,500 – including a sizeable sprinkling of Leeds supporters – turn up at United Park for the 12 noon kick-off.

Drogheda, who began their Premier Division campaign with a disappointing 2-0 defeat at the hands of Derry City on Friday night, held their own in the early stages.

Declan O’Brien and Tony Bird – both of whom sat out the league opener due to suspension – had chances of beating veteran Leeds keeper Kevin Pressman, while Brian Deane and Joachim came close to breaking the deadlock at the other end.

The Whites took the lead 11 minutes before half-time, a long ball from Kelly flicked on by Deane for Joachim to finish past home keeper Tony O’Dowd. (O’Dowd was one of three ex-Leeds players in the Drogheda side, joining defenders Damian Lynch and Derek Tyrrell in going into battle with his former club.)

Bird had a chance to level just before the break but he was unable to keep his header on the target.

However, the Drogs equalised within a minute of the restart, Reilly stepping up to slam the ball past Pressman after a foul on O’Brien by Leeds’ Gylfi Einarsson.

Both sides came close to a winner, with Joachim testing Drogs replacement keeper Dan Connor and home substitute Mark Leech forcing Pressman into a smart save before the end.

Kelly’s time on the pitch came to an end at the break, when he was replaced by Republic of Ireland under-17 star Robert Bayly.

Drogheda: O’Dowd (Connor, h/t), Lynch, Tyrrell (Gartland, h/t), Gray (Malcolm, h/t), Sandvliet, Robinson, Ristila (Hartnett, 80), Bradley (Rooney, 59), Reilly (Freeman, 67), O’Brien, Bird (Leech, h/t).

Leeds: Pressman, Kelly (Bayly, h/t), Carlisle, Kilgallon, Pugh, Wright (Gray, 70), Spring, Johnson, Einarsson (Woods, 60), Deane (Wright, 84), Joachim.

Referee: I. Stokes (Dublin).

Thanks to www.eleven-a-side.com for the match report.