Pontus Jansson has agreed a new five year deal with the club, a move that will surely please many fans.
The Swedish defender is a cult hero at Elland Road and any deal that continues his stay at the club we be welcomed.
Jansson signed a new five year deal at the club only four months since he completed his deal from Torino on a three year deal.
Although suffering for form recently, this deal could be the news that the player needed as the club continue their commitment towards him.
Jansson himself has stated that he's not been happy with his most recent performances. His bad form has now given the opportunity to defensive pairing Liam Cooper and Matthew Pennington to pinch his starting spot.
What many people will forget is at the beginning of the season Pontus Jansson was involved in five consecutive clean sheets as Leeds stormed the league.
If the Swede can return to that heart stopping form Leeds will continue to progress in the league and pull off brilliant performances.
Keeping Jansson at the club longer can only be regarded as a brilliant move, let's hope he can now kick on.
By Ryan Ingham
Bristol City v Leeds
Team News: Stuart Dallas absent from the travelling squad due to a bereavement. Pennington, Vieira and Alioski come in to the starting eleven, Jansson, Roofe and Hernandez drop to the bench.
Team: Lonergan, Ayling, Jansson, Cooper(c), Berardi, O’Kane, Phillips, Vieira, Alioski, Siaz, Lasogga.
A first half brace from Samuel Saiz did the damage, with Pierre-Michel Lasogga adding the third as both teams ended the game with ten men.The away side have now climbed above City in the Sky Bet Championship, in a game which was witnessed by nearly 25,000 fans.
Leeds were ahead inside four minutes after Samuel Saiz saw his shot deflect beyond Frank Fielding, Flint's attempted clearance was charged down and the ball rebounded to Pierre-Michel Lasogga. He drifted into the area, held the ball up before superbly laying it off to Saiz, whose effort found the back of the net, via a deflection. Siaz grabbed his second on fifteen minutes, following up when Alioski’s initial shot was saved by Fielding.
Bristol were stunned but just a minute later O’Dowda managed to swing a cross in from the left-hand side and Reid connected with a header which went just wide of Andy Lonergan’s goal.
Leeds looked to add a third immediately after the restart with Pierre-Michel Lasogga in among the chances for the visitors, Fielding got down well to deny him first, before the striker somehow poked a stretched shot wide with the goal gaping. Flint then blocked another Lasogga effort just moments later while at the other end, Hegeler rose to meet a Brownhill cross which was placed into the hands of Lonergan.
The Whites striker did add a third on 68 minutes after he towered above home defence to head in a Kalvin Phillips corner. Game over.
Tempers flared as the game entered its final ten minutes, Bristol City substitute Matty Taylor went down after a ‘altercation’ with Gaetano Berardi who was given his marching orders from referee Langford after allegedly headbutting the City substitute, then Taylor was also sent off in the aftermath for the initial challenge on Berardi, both benches became involved with words exchanged by several players.
City missed a late chance for a consolation goal as Leeds ran out worthy winners.
Three and easy. Siaz (2) and Lasogga give Leeds three points.
Thomas Christainsen dedicated the win to Stuart Dallas after his bereavement. Christainsen said that the team made a ‘point’ in how they can play, said also the intensity was higher today. "We were much more aggressive, we knew we faced a strong team and perhaps that helped. Being brave was one of the things we had to do, believing in ourselves. We've sometimes thought too much about the opponent."
Christainsen did not see the incident leading to Berardi’s sending off and asked the referee why he sent him off, referee told him it was for retaliation, head-butting Taylor over a challenge.
Very happy with the team’s display after a few bad results.
Lee Johnson: "As much as I'd like to say we deserved to win, we didn't. Right from the off." He also commented that Ronaldo Vieira “ran the show”
The Sky Bet Championship result of the day was judged as Leeds’ 3-0 victory at Bristol City.
Andrew Butterwick’s reflections on a superb performance and another win at Ashton Gate.
As always a ‘gem’ of a blog and hopefully the journey home was a very happy one.
Social Media was full of praise for Coops and Pennington, Samuel Siaz, Ronaldo Vieira and Kalvin Phillips (how attitudes change, week to week on certain players), Thomas Christainsen again back in place as the messiah chosen to take the team back to the promised land.
Andrew Butterwick put it perfectly in his blog “a week being a long time in politics ...it’s a lot longer in football !”
Heidi Haigh celebrated the release of her new book ‘The Sleeping Giant Awakens, Leeds United 2016/17’ with a very happy trip to Bristol.
Heidi’s book is now available on Amazon and will be in the club shop by the end of the month, priced very reasonably at £12.99.
Definitely worth a read. Thanks HH.
Kalvin Phillips vs. Bristol City:
78% pass acc.
4 chances created
2 tackles won
Stats by @LUFCDATA
FA confirms a three-match ban for Gaetano Berardi. He will miss the Leicester, Sheffield United, Derby County games.
Thomas Christainsen looks ahead to the Carabao Cup tie at Leicester City: “Our last game we were very good. A lot more intensity”, less than impressed with the ‘bumpy’ flight home to Leeds / Bradford airport “I was afraid”
On Vieira: “A good example to others currently out of the side”.
Both League and Cup are as important to the club. Mentioned that if players disagree with being dropped or need to talk “his door is always open”
Players not considered for the Carabao Cup tie, Stuart Dallas (bereavement), Berardi(suspended), Ekuban(injury). Borthwick-Jackson is included into the squad.
Very upbeat Head Coach.
This Day in 2000-
Who can forget this game, when we were literally a minute from beating the mighty Barcelona at Elland Road. I missed the game as I was on holiday in Spain but was sat in a Spanish bar full of Barcelona fans and nearly went through the bar roof when Lee Bowyer scored, later my head was in my hands when Rivaldo equalised in late in added time.
Proud and very drunk night.
The FA has overturned the red card shown to Matty Taylor (Bristol City) on Saturday. Wrongful dimissal appeal upheld, 3-game ban withdrawn.
Leicester City v Leeds
Carabao Cup 4th Round
Team News: Ten changes, only Kalvin Phillips keeps his place from the team that started at Bristol City.
Team: Wiedwald, Anita, Jansson, Shaughnessy, Borthwick-Jackson, Klich, Phillips, Hernandez(c), Cibicki, Roofe, Grot.
Leeds went out of the Carabao Cup after they were beaten 3-1, the score says little of the very good first half performance in which they took the lead, with Mahrez and Vardy introduced in the second half the obvious class the Premiership side had at it's disposal was just too much for Thomas Christainsen’s ‘second eleven’.
In a open first half, Leeds had a early opportunity to take the lead through Jay-Roy Grot, his shot though was saved by Hamer, the rebound was hammered to safety. They did though get the opener on twenty six minutes, a superb strike from captain-for-the-night Pablo Hernandez, his ‘shimmy’ beat the defender’s around himself and he beat Hamer with a sublime shot, the lead was to last four minutes, Iheanacho beating Wiedwald easily with a low shot into the corner of the net, worse could have followed but Gray’s effort hit the bar late in the half.
Pablo kisses the armband after the opening goal.
Ayling replaced Borthwick-Jackson after the break and Vurnon Anita swapped over to left back. Leicester had the greater possession but did little to trouble the Leeds keeper until the a minute after Slimani missed a gift of a chance that Albrighton set up for him, this time Gray beat the Leeds defensive line to slide a ball to the Slimani who beat Jansson to the ball and slid it into the net, worse was to follow with only two minutes left, Mahrez cut in from right wing and finished the game with a smart finish that ended inside Wiedwald’s far post.
Thomas Christainsen may be relieved that he can concentrate solely on the Championship now, at least until the draw is made for the third round of the FA Cup!
Thomas Christainsen: “We knew about Leicester’s quality and I’m very proud and happy with the performance. Unfortunately we couldn’t keep the lead until half-time, the players are disappointed to be out of the cup after arriving so far but they are realistic about who we played against. For me, I cannot complain in any sense, obviously it (promotion) was our goal from the beginning of the season.
"I want to compete in all competitions, but now we’re out of one of them, it gives even more focus on the special one that is the Championship.”
Michael Appleton: “They are up there for a reason and they will certainly finish in the top six in my view. Their supporters are something else, it’s the type of club that probably deserves to be in the Premier League, just on its fan base alone."
David Watkins reviews the cup defeat at Leicester City
Thank you David, no disgrace loosing to them with our ‘second team’ on duty. At least we have one this season!
Pontus pens a new deal
Pontus Jansson has become the latest Leeds United player to extend their stay at Elland Road, by putting pen to paper on a new five year deal. Swedish international Jansson joined the Whites from Italian outfit Torino on loan at the beginning of the 2016/17 season, before the deal became permanent over the summer.
The 26-year-old has made a total of 47 appearances for Leeds, scoring three goals and has become a key figure at the heart of the Leeds defence.
The centre back Jansson joins a long list of Thomas Christiansen's squad to commit their future to Leeds with the likes of Eunan O’Kane, Stuart Dallas, Kalvin Phillips, Gaetano Berardi, Ronaldo Vieira, Conor Shaughnessy, Liam Cooper and Luke Ayling all signing new long term contracts this summer.
Jannson's new deal will expire at the end of the 2021/22 season.
Chris Wilder on being back in the Championship: “We just really enjoy being in the Championship. The games have been brilliant for everyone, both the people who have played and the staff. It was hard going to Middlesbrough (on the second Saturday of the season) because they are a good side and nothing has changed (in any of the subsequent games), but it is something we are enjoying. How can it be a slog when you have been out of it for six years? It can’t be a slog at any time, there are going to be periods when you are struggling, but the Championship is there to be enjoyed.”
Ronaldo Vieira: “It's a sell out but our fans are always great anyway, home or away, I hope they can be the 12th man for us.”
Thomas Christainsen’s look at tomorrow’s ‘six pointer’ with Sheffield United. On Stuart Dallas “This is a situation that nobody wants to go through but he is strong, he knows what to do and he has good people around him, especially Liam Cooper who takes good care of him. They are very good friends and this is important for him to have this kind of support.” Dallas is available for the game but Cameron Borthwick-Jackson is out with injury with Caleb Ekuban, Gaetano Berardi is suspended. Very happy that Kalvin Phillips didn’t get booked in midweek, one more booking and he will be suspended for reaching five yellow cards.
He (Christainsen) said “It was important that Kalvin didn’t see any yellow cards. It was one of the biggest problems or issues in the game but he passed through it very well.” On the game, Christiansen in no doubt that tomorrow is a key game. “If we lose we are seven points behind Sheffield United, at this stage it’s too much.”
A game as big as they get in the Championship, fourth placed Leeds face third placed Sheffield United. Throw in that it’s West versus South Yorkshire and a full house, you’ve got a cracker of a game to watch.
Sheffield are in great form, four wins and only two defeats has put the promoted ‘Blades’ in a great position after thirteen games. They have a well respected manager in Chris Wilder and in the position they are in through hard work and a team that has a lot for Leeds to worry about, Billy Sharp will no doubt want to ‘put one one over’ his past employers after a not so successful spell at Leeds.
Leeds, after a morale boosting victory over Bristol City will hope to cut the gap to one point if they get the three points. Only change I’m expecting in the team is Vurnon Anita to replace the suspended Gaetano Berardi, but with Sheffield playing three at the back, Christainsen may also match them, employing wing backs. If that is so Alioski is well versed in the position for his national side.
With both teams in the top six, expect a tight game. Leeds with a massive crowd behind them hopefully will just have enough to beat their South Yorkshire rivals. Leeds 2-1.
A interesting week with a superb win at Bristol, followed by a defeat in the cup at Leicester. More good signs behind the scenes with a improved contract for Jansson and lets all give a cheer to Toby tomorrow night, the young boy deserves the best. Let’s give him a night he and his family never forget.
By Keith Ingham
Last night Leeds unfortunately dropped out of the last 16 in the Carabao Cup.
The Yorkshire performed admirably against a revitalised Leicester City who boasted a side full of shear talent.
Thomas Christiansen made the right decision to make ten changes to the side who beat Bristol City at the weekend with a keen focus on Fridays match against Sheffield United on his mind.
Although a cup run is brilliant for both fans and the club, the main focus this season has to be on success in the Championship.
Having suffered three straight defeats the win against Bristol propelled the club back into the playoff positions and although its early, you don't want to create any points divide between you and the top six.
Something that also stood out was individual performances of players in the game who may not have been considered for first team opportunities.
Jay Roy Grot showed again that he is a handful for even Premier League standard defenders at time, bullying Harry Maguire and co for the first half in which Leeds took a lot of control. The young forward is coming on leaps and bounds with each opportunity and could be set to be a real asset for the club.
Another player who's confidence will have been buoyed will be Pablo Hernandez, who's spectacular goal once again showed the magic that he can provide.
Other notable players were Kemar Roofe, Kalvin Phillips and Conor Shaughnessy. Whereas players like Felix Wiedwald, Pontus Jansson and Mateusz Klich left a lot to be desired during the game.
Leeds now go ahead to a very tough game against fellow playoff challengers Sheffield United, who are on their own superb run of late.
What do you think about exiting the cup? Would you have preferred to enter the quarter finals? Have your say in the comments below!
By Ryan Ingham
Leeds v Reading
Team News: Three changes, Lonergan, Cooper, Hernandez come in.
Team: Lonergan, Ayling, Jansson, Cooper(c),Berardi, O’Kane, Phillips, Roofe, Siaz, Hernandez, Lasogga.
A poor game not helped by indifferent refereeing, Leeds fell to a sucker punch by ex Leeds loanee Mo Barrow, his goal six minutes from time gave the advantage to the visitors. A foul on Samuel Siaz in the penalty area gave Leeds a lifeline in injury time but Pablo Hernandez’s penalty was easily saved by Mannone.
The shortness of the match report sums up my feelings on the proceedings, tired, leggy and struggling for form sums up the Leeds performance, I cannot put my finger on why the performances recently have turned upside down.
It was a uninspiring game that neither side did much to excite the full house at Elland Road, the reaction of the crowd at full time was to be expected. Most went home wondering what has gone so wrong in such a short time.
Man of the Match: Andy Lonergan.
Stuart Dallas consoles Pablo Hernandez after his penalty miss.
The Super League Trophy was paraded at half time by members of the victorious Leeds Rhino’s squad
Ahead of tomorrow's match we spoke to Mike Codrington about all things Bristol City.
How long have you been a City fan?
All my life, been a season ticket holder for the last 18 years, only missing one home league and cup match in this time and unfortunately for me that was the 4-1 demolishing of Derby this season!
What are your favourite moments supporting the Robins?
Over the years we’ve had a lot of ups and downs but a couple of moments that stand out have to be David Nobles wonder striker in the first leg of the championship play off semi-final against Palace and also Lee Trundles goal in the second leg which helped send us to the final at Wembley which was the worst moment supporting us.
Who have been your favourite players from History?
Every club has club legends and growing up Scott Murray, Brian Tinnion, Louis Carey we’re always my favourites. Within the current squad I’m going to give it to Marlon Pack. But Matty Taylor has to have a mention for obvious reasons!
Lee Johnson, lucky or a magician?
Very much a bit of both! He is very very lucky to have still been in a job after last season’s abysmal run. He is lucky that in Steve Lansdown he had an owner who stuck with him, not many managers would still be in a job having lost 8 games in a row, which saw us going from top 6 into a relegation battle in a couple of months which we found it hard to get out of, a 5-0 battering away at Preston back in April actually saved us from relegation.
We then changed formation reverting to 4-4-2 and from there on we played 6, won 4, drew 1 and lost 1 which annoyingly came on the last game of the season where we could of relegated Birmingham but the 3 points kept them up.
Since then, we have stuck with the 4-4-2 line up, with an excellent pre-season in between we have continued the form we showed towards the end of last season and we are currently on a 12 game un beaten run, the only team that have beat us league and cup this season are again Birmingham! In our previous 21 games we have only tasted defeat twice (Birmingham on both occasions) with 12 wins and 7 draws accumulating the rest.
The only thing we need to address is turning the draws into wins if we can learn to break teams down better who come to defend against us we will have a very, very good season.
Although on the pitch Leeds are struggling, off it they are one of the smartest clubs in the English Second Division.
Yesterday came the news that the club had extended the contract of the phenomenal right back that is Luke Ayling.
The 26-year old has been a revelation since joining the club from this Saturdays opposition Bristol City on an initial three year deal.
Now a fans favourite, the Leeds faithful will surely be delighted at the news of Ayling's extended terms having signed a new four year contract with the club.
Speaking on the deal, Ayling said that the fans were now 'stuck with him' which I'm sure we won't be hearing any complaints.
Leeds' Managing Director Victor Orta who has been working on the deal has once again showed his talents, having already extended deals for Liam Cooper, Kalvin Phillips and Gaetano Berardi.
The club seem more forward thinking when it comes to contracts and work fast in order to secure the long term future of the club, something that we have never seen before.
Orta's insistence on completing these deals gives Leeds the option to focus on new signings rather than the potential loss of a star, something we have been dogged by in the past.
What do you think of the clubs approach off the pitch? Are you happy Ayling has extended his stay at Leeds? Have your say in the comments below!
By Ryan Ingham
With Leeds falling to another miserable defeat on Saturday at home to Reading, it's highly expected that we'll see changes at the club.
With this Saturday's trip to Bristol firmly in the mind of Thomas Christiansen, changes in the lineup will surely be a major factor in his mind.
The squad that faced Reading lacked any mental or physical strength and players like Lasogga and Hernandez can no longer hide behind a good run of form.
If Leeds are to correct the ships course in good time, now is the moment to do it. With the club only being six points behind leaders Wolves, a good run into Christmas can keep the Whites in the chase for promotion.
If changes are to be made, TC may look to fringe players like Hadi Sacko or Stuart Dallas to come in from the cold and make a difference. Both wingers have been used as effective substitutes this season and the away fixture against a well performing Bristol could be the perfect time to change things about.
Sacko's pace and Dallas' technical ability will surely cause a stir at Ashton Gate and could be the perfect mixture providing TC can pick the right man up front, in our minds Kemar Roofe.
The talented striker stepped in when no one was there to help the club and scored an impressive five goals in three games for the club, if Leeds are to use every arsenal in their locker, this could be the perfect way to send a message to the rest of the players.
The final option would be to moult your midfield to that of your opposition, if the team forces you to need strength, then Ronaldo Vieira is the only option and the young midfielder should be utilised.
With another hard few weeks on their way Leeds need to act fast if they are to save their season, let's hope TC has done his homework on a highflying Bristol City.
By Ryan Ingham
Reading caused another ‘chink’ in Thomas Christainsen’s armour on Saturday by winning 1-0 at Elland Road.
Apart from Andy Lonergan these players were the ones that set off at speed earlier in the season, so what’s gone wrong?
You first must make a look at the line up against Reading, experienced at the back, pretty much, apart from the ‘tired’ Alioski, the same players in midfield who have played the majority of games so far. With one up top and Siaz just behind him. Why then did it not work then?
First, you didn’t see anybody apart from Lonergan shout or gesticulate to another player. We need leaders out there and on Saturday that was clearly not there.
Thomas Christainsen’s Post Match comments did little to appease the annoyance of the defeat. I’d and more fans around me yesterday would have been more happy if he’d been stronger with his words.
Like over thirty plus thousand saw it, a team that started the season incredibly well now playing as if there is something not right within the dressing room. It’s never nice to hear boos at the end of a game but the performance warranted a lot of criticism.
It’s clear that teams have ‘found us out’ and realise if you close Leeds down and stop them getting it out wide you stop the creatively.
Plans B and C are needed, maybe three at the back with Dallas or Alioski on the left, Ayling on the right with Ronaldo Vieira and Vernon Anita an option as the midfield anchor man.
Up front Kemar Roofe did quite well as a front runner and scored goals, play him alongside either Grot or Lasogga. Little has been seen of Pawel Cibicki so why not give him a few games.
The squad has options and it’s time for Christainsen to get the best out of what he has at his disposal. Three bad performances and results don’t ruin a season but a win is definitely needed to appease rumbles.
It's not a ‘knee jerk’ reaction that is needed, but displays like yesterday have to stop or another season in nowhere land beckons.
Over to you Thomas.
By Keith Ingham