FOOTBALL: Action replay: Chelsea's spirit leaves Leeds with nothing

The most memorable matches between Chelsea and Leeds United, who met in the Premiership yesterday, came in the final of the FA Cup in 1970. After a 2-2 draw, the replay at Old Trafford went into extra time. Ken Jones filed this account for the Daily Mirror

CHELSEA DELIVERED a final, crushing blow in a season of ultimate despair for Leeds, when they won the FA Cup for the first time in their history at Old Trafford last night.

It was a triumph of spirit and determination, a glowing example of what a team can achieve when it refuses to quit.

Since the turn of the year, Chelsea's strength has been the extent of their stamina and sustained effort. They drew on it last night to overcome in extra time the football with which Leeds threatened to destroy them, as they had threatened to win for so much of the time at Wembley two weeks ago.

Here in one match were the extremes of exaltation and despair which are suffered each season in football.

For weeks now there has been an air of inevitability about Leeds' failure. The championship was taken from them by Everton and the European Cup, the most prized of their targets, was left to be contested by Celtic in Italy next week. They are left with nothing. And Chelsea will come home in triumph this morning, handsomely rewarded for the football and effort which has brought them forward as a team of outstanding quality.

But in a match whose undertones of violence were not helped by inefficient refereeing, there were long periods when it looked as though Leeds would run away with it. Referee Eric Jennings was a figure of bland indifference as players went over the ball, and as others fell before crushingly illegal challenges. A mark of Chelsea's committed effort is that their fouls almost tripled those conceded by Leeds.

But this was all a part of of their refusal to give in when their goalkeeper, Peter Bonetti, was limping with a heavily bruised knee after he had been beaten by a thundering shot from Mick Jones.

Leeds had to play without their goalkeeper, Gary Sprake, but his young deputy, David Harvey, rarely had to do more than field back-passes in the first half-hour.

It was in the 35th minute that they struck the first vital blow. Allan Clarke bravely careered through three tackles and then set Jones free through the middle. Bonetti, who a few minutes earlier had been bludgeoned to the floor as Jones challenged on a long cross from Paul Madeley, came limping from his line. But Jones shot with devastating force beyond Bonetti's right shoulder.

Leeds were immediately content to consolidate their lead but they suffered a blow themselves when Eddie Gray was crippled by an appalling foul by Chelsea captain, Ron Harris. Remembering Gray's total domination of David Webb at Wembley, Chelsea switched Harris to full-back.

Chelsea refused to give in, and managed to protect Bonetti from crosses by containing Leeds on the touch-line in the second half. And yet as the game drew on through the final phase of normal time, it seemed that Leeds at last would finish with something.

Then, out of nowhere, Chelsea were revitalised by a great goal. Charlie Cooke sprinted forward to take a pass from John Hollins, and then centred perfectly through Leeds' line of defenders to find Peter Osgood sneaking in to score with a perfect header.

Chelsea lived on to take their reward with a goal whose pattern has been seen many times this season. With only a minute left during the first half of extra time, Ian Hutchinson hurled as long a ball as he has thrown from the touch-line. Harvey, under pressure, could not take it and David Webb, whose enthusiasm typified Chelsea's spirit, thundered in to score at the far post.

It was now Chelsea's Cup as Leeds, remembering that they had shots kicked from the line, and recalling their superiority at Wembley, began to reveal obvious signs of frustration and demoralisation. They pushed Billy Bremner and Jack Charlton forward, but recovery was beyond them.

News
Susan Sarandon described David Bowie as
peopleSusan Sarandon reveals more on her David Bowie romance
Sport
sportDidier Drogba returns to Chelsea on one-year deal
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Louis van Gaal would have been impressed with Darren Fletcher’s performance against LA Galaxy during Manchester United’s 7-0 victory
football
Voices
The new dawn heralded by George Osborne has yet to rise
voicesJames Moore: As the Tories rub their hands together, the average voter will be asking why they're not getting a piece of the action
Sport
Dejan Lovren celebrates scoring for Southampton although the goal was later credited to Adam Lallana
sport
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Arts and Entertainment
Jo Brand says she's mellowed a lot
tvJo Brand says shows encourage people to laugh at the vulnerable
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
Sport
Rhys Williams
commonwealth games
News
Isis fighters travel in a vehicle as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Southern charm: Nicolas Cage and Tye Sheridan in ‘Joe’
filmReview: Actor delivers astonishing performance in low budget drama
Life and Style
fashionLatex dresses hit the catwalk to raise awareness for HIV and Aids
Travel
travel
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior Risk Manager - Banking - London - £650

£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...

Commercial Litigation Associate

Highly Attractive Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - COMMERCIAL LITIGATION - GLOBAL...

Systems Manager - Dynamics AX

£65000 - £75000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: The client is a...

Service Delivery Manager (Software Development, Testing)

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A well-established software house ba...

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform