Huddsf’ld 1 – 0 Luton

Jordan Rhodes struck late to seal a 2-1 aggregate win for Huddersfield and send them to the Sky Bet Championship play-off final at the expense of Luton.

After a 1-1 first-leg draw on Friday night, it was the Hatters who dominated the majority of the proceedings at John Smith’s Stadium, but failed to press their opportunities.

And they would pay it late as Rhodes struck eight minutes from time to seal their place in the final. They face Nottingham Forest or Sheffield United – who meet in the second leg of their own draw on Tuesday night – as they continue their bid to return to the Premier League after a three-year absence.

For Luton, it’s the end of a fantastic campaign which saw them defy the odds to reach the play-offs in the first place. Their journey will continue in the Championship next season and their 30-year absence from the top flight continues.

Luton pay for missed chances as Huddersfield strike late

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Jordan Rhodes got a nice free-kick from Sorba Thomas to give Huddersfield the lead over Luton

Luton’s away record against the league’s top sides hadn’t been great this season but they started brilliantly on Monday night and should have taken the lead in the draw at 11 minutes when Kal Naismith and Allan Campbell are linked before the latter finds Harry Cornick. unmarked in the middle, but he could only fire on Lee Nicholls – when a finish either side would have been a certain goal.

Huddersfield’s only real half-time opener in which they were second came in the 37th minute, when Harry Toffolo collected the ball 35 yards from goal and passed two markers to enter the box. But he could also only shoot Matt Ingram.

Toffolo and Ingram then tangled again in the 75th minute after the Luton goalkeeper made two excellent saves he appeared to clumsily bring down the Huddersfield left-back. The opposing team shouted for a penalty, but referee Peter Bankes gave up on his pretensions.

But Huddersfield would not be left out of this moment as Rhodes – who came on as a first-half substitute for the injured Danny Ward – came at the far post to slip in and finish on Sorba Thomas’ free-kick and send the Terriers to Wembley.

What the managers said…

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Carlos Corberan felt Luton were stronger than Huddersfield in the first half but his side had the right character to get back in the game.

from Huddersfield Carlos Corberán“Our goal was to get to Wembley to play in the final and we achieved that. As a club, we always try to learn from everything we do and use that experience to improve, and that’s is what we have done this year.

“The players are the key. I had a very good group of players to work with, with an incredible character. We are determined to do something special this year, and with this group of players everything was easy.

“The first half was a challenge. They were better than us. In the second half we tried to press more and the game was more balanced. I don’t think either of the teams was better [after half-time]. It was a very competitive semi-final.”

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Nathan Jones felt Luton were the better team and was very proud of their performance

from Luton nathan jones“Firstly let’s congratulate Huddersfield because they’ve been great all season and they’re going to Wembley. Secondly I couldn’t be more proud of my team. We were the better team tonight and we missed chances in There was a bit of neglect in the second half and then they scored from a set piece.

“I’m so, so proud of the team and the way they did their job. We’ve had to deal with absolutely everything. We’re eight short tonight, and the margins have been so tight. But this n It’s not sour grapes, I’m so proud of my team and I think we were brilliant tonight. We’ll come back stronger for that. We start working again tomorrow to be even better next year.

“Man of the match, Rhodes made the difference”

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Jordan Rhodes says he will remember Huddersfield’s win over Luton his whole life as Sorba Thomas explains how he targeted the striker for the winning goal

Jobi McAnuff on Sky Sports Football:

“For me it’s all about Jordan Rhodes. He’s a cunning old fox and I think at the end of the day that’s what it is; a team that has a real goalscorer who made it for so many years and perhaps one who missed theirs at a crucial point in the season.

“You have to take your hat off to the quality of the delivery, but also to the movement, the desire and, of course, the finishing of Rhodes to achieve this goal.”

Curtis Davies on Sky Sports Football:

“He’s totally different from Danny Ward. Ward gets a bit more involved in the game, he steps in and directs the channels, while Jordan wants to stay against the last centre-half. I said he needs a chance and, to be fair, it was half a chance.

“It was the desire to go all the way. He extends the leg and that instinct just to find the bottom corner is amazing and that’s what he does. That’s what he’s always done at this level He’s not necessarily the player you’ll see the whole game, but when it comes to taking risks he’s one of the best.”

‘Huddersfield’s job is not done’ | “Luton were the better team”

Jobi McAnuff on Sky Sports Football:

“That’s what they’ve been working for all season. They would have dreamed of it for so long, but the job isn’t done. They can enjoy tonight, but there’s still a game to play at Wembley. “

Curtis Davies on Sky Sports Football:

“It’s an incredible feeling for Huddersfield, especially after conceding so many chances in the first half. Luton were the better team, but to come first will be a huge relief for Huddersfield.”

And after?

will travel to the Sky Bet Championship play-off final to face Nottingham Forest or Sheffield United at Wembley on Sunday May 29 – live on Sky Sports Football.

Sky Sports

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