Sky Bet Championship: Ben Gibson nets leveller as Middlesbrough and Huddersfield draw 1-1
Ben Gibson earned Middlesbrough a 1-1 draw at home to Huddersfield in their Championship clash on Tuesday evening.
Last Updated: 02/10/13 11:12am
Luckless Boro looked on course for defeat when James Vaughan got the final touch on Oscar Gobern's strike just before the hour for a fortuitous goal that was very much against the run of play.
The home side, who last won on August 10, had overcome a sluggish start to dominate for large spells and they were finally rewarded when Gibson powered a header home from a corner to ensure a 1-1 draw.
It was the visitors who probed away in the opening stages although they failed to take advantage of lapses in defence from Boro, who may have been missing the experience of the injured Jonathan Woodgate.
The home side's run of form seemed to be affecting them at both ends of the pitch although Mustapha Carayol roused the supporters by bursting forward from midfield, exchanging passes with Kei Kamara, before shooting straight at Huddersfield goalkeeper Alex Smithies.
While Kamara fired over after Huddersfield failed to sufficiently clear the danger from Grant Leadbitter's tame effort, Boro were given a huge let-off when Adam Hammill worked his way into the left side of the penalty area only for his chipped cross-cum-shot to rebound off the bar.
That acted as a wake-up call for Tony Mowbray's men, who immediately burst up field, with Carayol cutting in from the left and forcing Smithies down low with a shot across goal, while the Town custodian also had to palm away an effort from Kamara soon after.
Gibson should have done better after putting a free header wastefully wide from Grant Leadbitter's corner as Boro continued to dominate.
Terriers captain Peter Clarke then made a timely intervention to deny Albert Adomah an open goal from Frazer Richardson's teasing ball along the box and ensure the score remained goalless at the interval.
Leadbitter then failed to apply the finishing touch from George Friend's ball into the area before the Teessiders were hit with a sucker punch in the 59th minute.
While it was no surprise in-form Vaughan was the goalscorer, the manner of the goal summed up the home side's season and must have left Mowbray disgusted.
His defenders hesitated after Daniel Ward had hit the post and Gobern's strike from the edge of the area took a telling deflection off Vaughan before nestling in the net.
Middlesbrough almost equalised immediately afterwards but again they were left to bemoan poor finishing, with Kamara heading wide from six yards when given plenty of space by Huddersfield's defenders.
They continued to push forward and their endeavour was finally rewarded when Gibson atoned for his earlier miss.
The centre-back was once again given far too much room in the Huddersfield box but this time the young defender was on hand to head into the top corner from Leadbitter's corner.
Whitehead then headed against the bar from Adomah's cross from the right as Huddersfield held on for a scarcely-deserved point.