Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 3 (FA Cup 3rd Round)
A second half goal by Plymouth Argyle captain Joe Edwards saw the Pilgrims beat an inexperienced Huddersfield Town side who twice had the lead.
It was Plymouth’s first FA Cup win against Town at the fifth attempt as the Terriers went out at the third round stage for the third time in three seasons.
Goals by Romoney Critchlow and Aaron Rowe were cancelled out by equalisers from Ryan Hardie and Panutche Camara in an action packed first half but Plymouth finally exploited mistakes in the inexperienced Terriers’ backline to score a 70th minute winner by Edwards from close range while Luke Jephcott and Camara could have made the scoreline for comfortable for the Pilgrims.
Town manager Carlos Corberan named an entirely different starting XI after a tired second half in the defeat against Reading on Tuesday.
Midfielder Alex Vallejo was handed his full debut for the Terriers – only his third appearance for Town since he joined in October – and played in defence and was joined in the team by a mix of fringe players and youth teamers to play against League One Plymouth Argyle.
New signing Rolando Aarons was named on the bench having signed from Newcastle United having spent some time on loan at Motherwell in 2020 but there was no sign of Alex Prichard in the matchday squad.
The Pilgrims had only won 3 of their last 12 games in all competitions, including a home win against Lincoln City in the second round of the FA Cup to set up the game at the St John’s Stadium and went with a strong team, making only two changes from their 1-0 win over Gillingham last week.
And Town were off to a quick start after a great run by Josh Austerfield who ran to the touchline and cut the ball back to Kieron Phillips who forced an acrobatic save from Michael Cooper to keep it out from close range in the fourth minute.
But from Pat Jones’ corner Cooper could not keep out the ball which was glanced inside the back post by Romoney Crichlow in the fourth minute.
Matty Daly had a shot blocked as Town could have extended their lead but the Terriers left themselves in danger of an equaliser from Plymouth and the visitors looked dangerous on the break with Town sloppy on the ball.
Will Aimson headed a corner over after Plymouth but they soon scored the equaliser when Ryan Hardie slid the ball past Ben Hamer in the 24th minute after Luke Jephcott put the ball through after Demeaco Duhaney lost the ball.
Jaden Brown sent an ambitious free kick wide from 30 yards out and had later chance deflected for a corner with Town trying to hit back.
But the Terries were soon back in the lead after Aaron Rowe cut inside from the right and scored his first goal for the Terriers with a sweetly struck left footed curler which flew in to the top corner past Cooper after 32 minutes.
Panutche Camara was left with a simple tap in to equalise against for Plymouth in the 42nd minute after Crichlow failed to intercept Danny Mayor’s cross following another Pilgrims raid down Town’s right flank as the game remained action packed.
Experience helps Plymouth Argyle take the chance that they need to beat Huddersfield Town
Town were on the front foot in the second half, with Jones having a shot blocked while Hardie had a shot parried against the post by Hamer after Rowe gave the ball away on Town’s right flank.
Tactical adjustments by both sides made the second half scrappier as neither side could find a cutting edge.
Defensive errors cost Town as Mayor was allowed to run unchallenged along the goal line from the Town right flank before cutting the ball back to Plymouth captain Joe Edwards for a tap-in from 2 yards after 70 minutes.
Rolando Aarons was immediately introduced into the action for his Town debut for Jones.
Hamer saved from Jephcott to prevent a fourth Plymouth goal as the visitors’ experience began to count.
Ben Jackson and Brahima Diarra came on for Town as Corberan made more changes with 13 minutes to go while Frank Nouble was the visitors’ first change when he came on for Hardie a minute later and was followed by Dom Telford who replaced Jephcott.
Town made their final two changes in the 83rd minute when Etienne Camara and Miles Bright made their debuts for Austerfield and Matty Daly.
Telford headed over from a Conor Grant free kick before Plymouth made their final changes shortly after that as they replaced Grant with Byron Moore, while Tyrese Fornah was replaced by ex-Manchester United player Scott Wootton.
Town had a late shout for a penalty after a handball in added time and Vallejo cleared a goalbound shot by Camara but there was to be no reprieve for the brave Terriers this time after Plymouth’s improved second half.
GOALS – Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 3 (FA Cup 3rd Round)
Huddersfield Town 1, Plymouth Argyle 0: 4. Romoney Critchlow’s glancing header from Pat Jones’ corner beat Michael Cooper.
Huddersfield Town 1, Plymouth Argyle 1: 24. Ryan Hardie slid the ball past Ben Hamer after Deameaco Duhaney lost the ball and Luke Jephcott put him through.
Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 1: 32. Aaron Rowe cut inside from the right and elected to shoot with his weaker left foot – his 25-yard curling effort flew into the top corner past Michael Cooper.
Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 2: 42. Panutche Camara was left with a simple tap-in after Romoney Crichlow failed to get his head on Danny Mayor’s cross after another successful raid down Town’s right flank.
Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 3: 70. Defensive errors cost Town as Mayor was allowed to run unchallenged along the goal line from the Town right flank before cutting the ball back to Plymouth captain Joe Edwards for a tap-in from 2 yards.
MATCH STATS – Huddersfield Town 2, Plymouth Argyle 3 (FA Cup 3rd Round)
Huddersfield Town: Hamer (C), Duhaney, Crichlow, Olagunju (Diarra 77), Brown (Jackson 77), Austerfield (Camara 83), Vallejo, Daly (Bright 83), Rowe, Phillips, Jones (Aarons 71)
Huddersfield Town Subs not used: Schofield, Ayina, Sharrock-Peplow, Elliott
Bookings: Olagunju 6 (high boot), Duhaney 34 (foul on Panutche Camara)
Goals: Crichlow 4; Rowe 32
Plymouth Argyle: Cooper, Aimson, Opoku, Watts, Edwards (C), Camara, Mayor, Grant (Moore 85), Fornah (Wootton 85), Jephcott (Telford 82), Hardie (Nouble 78)
Plymouth Argyle Subs not used: McCormick, Ruddy, Canavan, Reeves
Goals: Hardie 24; Camara 42; Edwards 70
Referee: Martin Coy