Yeates' change of footwear does trick

THOSE boots are made for walking - and a change of footwear certainly worked for Mark Yeates on Saturday.

Carl Marston

THOSE boots are made for walking - and a change of footwear certainly worked for Mark Yeates on Saturday.

Yeates swapped boots at half-time at Elland Road, and his second choice footwear came up trumps as he blasted home a stunning free-kick to shock hosts Leeds United in a 2-1 victory.

The Dubliner netted one of the best goals of his career, on 66 minutes, to seal an historic first ever win at the famous home of Leeds. Yet he did it with his least favoured boots.

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“I have a couple of pairs, but I busted one of them in training. Two of the studs kept falling out,” explained match-winner Yeates.

“I actually prefer to play with mouldies (moulded boots), but I kept slipping about in the first half.

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“David Gregory (ex-player and current press officer) had brought the other pair up for me in the morning. I don't really like wearing studs much, but I changed into them at half-time.

“I ended up scoring, so I guess I must thank him,” added Yeates.

It was a superb free-kick, struck with curl and venom from the left edge of the penalty area. Leeds keeper David Lucas certainly had no chance.

The angle was quite tight, but the Dubliner was never in any doubt about shooting. The result was his eighth goal of the season.

“Everyone knows that I am capable of hitting a decent set piece, and I don't think I've hit a better one since I've been at Colchester,” insisted Yeates.

“When David Perkins won the free kick, I immediately fancied my chances. The one thought in my mind was to shoot. Paul Reid came up to me after the match and said that I should have crossed it into the box! It was a good bit of banter.

“It was actually a good range for me, and I knew as soon as I hit it that the ball was going to go in off the post. I've been unlucky to hit the woodwork several times this season, but I just kept my head down and struck it with pace.

“We have set standards for ourselves, and we fell below them against Hereford (2-1 home defeat). Personally, that was not one of my better games in a Colchester shirt.

“But today was a great result and a massive, massive win for us, especially after two decent performances and then a not-so-good-one against Hereford.

“To be honest, I thought we dominated the game. We had a lot of possession in the first half and several decent chances in the second,” added Yeates.

Ex-Tottenham winger Yeates had spent most of this season hugging the right flank, but he was switched to the left to good effect against Leeds.

He confirmed: “I played on the left the whole time I was originally at Colchester on loan (during the 2005-06 promotion-winning season).

“I've been on the right this season, as well as playing in the hole behind the front two. To be honest, I don't mind where I play, but maybe I benefit from playing on the left. It gives me the chance to cut in on my right foot.

“I got at the right-back, and got in several crosses and shots. In the end he (Andrew Hughes) was taken off, so I guess I did a good job.

“Kem (Izzet) had to do a shift on the right today, and he did a great job. I thought Clive Platt was also immense for us,” concluded Yeates.

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