For Sheffield Wednesday, winning the Steel City derby is what matters above all else. Victory over Manchester United, meanwhile, remains the Holy Grail for Leeds United supporters.
Despite both loving to hate others, tussles between the Owls and their neighbours from up the M1 retain an ability to ignite passions while at the same time producing some quite breathtaking football.
A crowd of 26,717 was treated to plenty of both last night as two contenders for goal of the season from Adam Reach and Mateusz Klich ensured honours ended even.
Leeds will have been the most disappointed of the two White Rose sides to claim just a point after bossing long periods of an entertaining contest that had been preceded by trouble between rival fans on the trams heading towards Hillsborough.
All post-match services, as a result, were suspended. This left many facing a long trek back to the city centre, which began to the accompaniment of wailing police sirens and flashing blue lights.
Whether those three or so miles were enough to settle the debate as to which of the strikes by Reach and Klich had been the best is doubtful.
Reach probably just took the prize courtesy of a quite sublime 30-yard left-footed shot on the stroke of half-time that no goalkeeper in the world would have kept out.
But Klich’s reply nine minutes after the restart was not far behind in the quality stakes, the Polish midfielder curling a quite exquisite effort from 25 yards into the corner of the net.
Both were worthy of winning any game so, maybe, it was fitting that neither Reach nor Klich finished on the losing side.
It was not, though, for the want of trying with both Wednesday and Leeds pushing for the night’s third goal right through a frantic finale that pushed the nerves of both sets of supporters to the limit.
For the hosts, Matt Penney brought a flying save from Bailey Peacock-Farrell. At the finish the Leeds goalkeeper then had to react smartly to keep out another searing Reach drive.
At the other end Tyle Roberts was twice denied at point-blank range in quick succession.
First, Michael Hector did brilliantly to block a goalbound header from the striker.
Then, after Roberts had again found space inside the six-yard box, Jordan Thorniley was this time in the right place at the right time to keep the ball out.
Throw in how Tom Lees nicked the ball off Ezgjan Alioski’s toes as he shaped to shoot and it was no wonder Leeds felt the most hard done by to end this pulsating derby without all three points.
They had played the better football, posing a threat down both flanks as the lively Samuel Saiz beavered away through the middle.
What Leeds lacked, however, was a killer instinct in front of goal with Barry Douglas heading against a post in the first half when unmarked eight yards out.
Moments later Kalvin Phillips should have buried the rebound only for his shot to lack sufficient power and the ball was diverted behind for a corner.
Klich also went close in those opening 45 minutes with a searing drive that Cameron Dawson touched over, while Ash Baker was the most relieved man inside Hillsborough when his miscued clearance dribbled just wide of a post.
United’s first-half profligacy was punished in the 45th minute by a stroke of genius from Reach.
He has some cracking goals to his name in a Wednesday shirt. Twice last season, for instance, Reach won Goal of the Month in the Championship for stunning strikes at Villa Park and the City Ground.
Neither, though, were quite on a par with last night’s effort. Collecting a Steven Fletcher flick from a throw-in 30 or so yards from goal, Reach had just one thought on his mind. Peacock-Farrell never stood a chance in the visitors’ goal, the ball sailing over his head and into the net off the inside of a post.
Reach’s response to breaking the deadlock was as classy as his goal, the one-time record £5m signing rushing over to the Wednesday dugout and holding aloft a team shirt in memory of Hayley Kalinins – the wife of Owls’ fitness coach Andy – who died earlier this month.
“That celebration was for the family,” said the goalscorer.
United drew level nine minutes into the second half courtesy of a neat passing move that ended with Roberts laying a pass off to Klick and the Pole doing the rest with a quite sublime finish that he felt should have preceded an away win. “We area little bit disappointed,” said Klich. “We dominated and should have scored more goals.”
Sheffield Wednesday: Dawson; Lees, Hector, Thorniley; Baker (Palmer 59), Bannan, Pelupessy, Penney; Reach, Fletcher (Nuhiu 77), Forestieri (Joao 81). Unused substitutes: Wildsmith, Onomah, Rice, Preston.
Leeds United: Peacock-Farrell; Ayling, Jansson, Cooper, Douglas; Phillips; Harrison, Klich, Saiz (Forshaw 89), Alioski; Roberts. Unused substitutes: Blackman, Dallas, Pearce, Baker, Shackleton, Clarke.
Referee: R Jones (Merseyside).