© Gacina Bozidar
Wolverhampton Wanderers without the slightest compassion- and why should there be in such fierce competition- last night beat Leeds United as time stood still yet and yet ran helter skelter in an exciting second half at Molineux. So Leeds having won the FA Cup at Wembley on Saturday, 48 hours later once more failed to achieve the double, ending as runners-up to Derby County for the Football League championship- the fifth time they have done so in the past eight seasons.
Once more, it was a brilliant failure to add to their distinguished record. It was a fierce match, exciting and nail biting, with five players “booked” by the referee-Mc Calliog, Shaw and Taylor for Wolves: Clarke and Hunter for Leeds. Yet Leeds died like heroes. With no Jones at centre forward and Clarke hobbling from the battle midway through the second half, in the end they lacked the big guns inside the penalty area to force the victory or the draw that ty needed.
They started with Gray AND Clarke, both heavily strapped on the thighs, with Yorath eventually substituted for the limping Clarke who will clearly not be fit to go to Germany with the England team. True, Richards missed a couple of gilt-edged chances for Wolverhampton against a Leeds side which by then was intent on throwing all their forces into attack, taking a chance on a thinly defended back. But when it was all over the Yorkshiremen could justifiably point to two penalty kicks denied them when Shaw clearly handled ball, once in each half.
On top of that, too, there were at last three outstanding saves by Parkes under the Wolves crossbar as Leeds threw everything at him in a final assault to reach their goal. In 1960 Wolves missed double by a point, so could well understand the feelings of their foe at the finish. So Derby have done it, learning of their triumph while on tour in Majorca. Absent landlords as it were. Thus, a new name has been added to the Cup and a new name to the League championship. Football, like wars, has its own rules. But the truth was that Leeds deserved the point they needed for the title in a match that was far from being gramophone record on repeat. Every moment seemed to have something new. Almost from the start it seemed that Leeds had decided that to slacken the pace was to lag behind and those who lag behind are beaten.However, they were beaten in spite of all their attack
Beginning with Bates at wing half in midfield as the understudy for the absent Jones and Bremmer at centre forward that was their tactical switch which was soon changed when Bremner retreated to midfield with Gray moving up into attack.
Later when Clarke was injured and departed Yorath took the stage and in the last desperate 10 minutes there was Yorath retreating to defence and changing places with the long legged Charlton in the hopes that the centre half would be able to knock in the desperately needed equalizer. Having being denied their penalty in the 24th minute and then seeing Parkes make two great diving saves to Bremner and Lorimer, it was Wolves who scrambled the crucial opening goal four minutes from the interval. It came from a short corner on the right by Wagstaffe. Shaw’s long diagonal cross was diverted into the goalmouth by Giles and in the ensuing melee there was Reaney just failing to stop Munro’s quick stab going in.
Next, came another penalty refusal six minutes after the interval-Shaw again after a thunderous free kick by Lorimer through the Wolves wall. Then began the “bookings” as Leeds turned the screw. Three great diving saves in succession by Parkes kept out Giles, Clarke and Clarke again. At the height of this offensive, with their back undefended, Leeds paid the price as a quick break between Hegan and Richards saw Dougan strike home goal number two with a plunging shot.
Twenty-five minutes were left then and that seemed the end of Leeds as Yorath was immediately substituted for the limping Clarke. Yet almost straight from the kick-off Giles swung a lovely pass out to the left.,Madeley crossed and there was Bremner to snap it in.
The excitement reached fever pitch as one side and then the next swept great passing moves at each other. At one end a shot by Wagstaffe was headed off the line by Madeley; at the other Bremner ended a long Hunter-Charlton move with a beautiful slanting run from the right and a left foot shot over the angle of the Wolves goal. In the dying minute, Taylor headed out from under the bar from Bremner after a corner by Gray on the right. There it ended with Leeds again kept from the prize they desire most of all. There have been few more tense matches all season, played on a skidding, treacherous surface.
At the Molineux, was gathered the biggest crowd with thousands more shut out.At one point, the human flood broke in at one corner and rows of stretchers came into use.
It was all rather chaotic for Wolverhampton: Dougan, Wagstaffe, and in the last analysis Parkes made the absolute decisions. But, Giles, in spite of being below full fitness, and Bremner kept popping up everywhere, Bremner whether up front or in midfield, as always was the surreptitious master. But Leeds could not quite do it though they almost with the last breath yanked themselves out of darkness into history.(THE TIMES, MAY 9 1972)