As per usual the Manager and Player of the month went elsewhere. They just don't like us, we don't care!
Leeds United spent nearly 800k on agents fees from February 2016 until January 2017, basically a centre forward!
Leeds v Preston North End
Team News: Three changes, Vieira, Roofe and Pedraza replace Bridcutt, Dallas and Barrow. Peacock-Farrell on the bench for the injured Silvestri.
Team: Green, Ayling, Bartley(c), Jansson, Berardi, Vieira, Phillips, Roofe, Hernandez, Pedraza, Wood.
It's was the away team that spurned two good chances early on, Barkhuizen the guilty Preston player, Leeds though got their noses in front when Roofe benefitted from a Chris Wood pass to lob Maxwell, they thought they'd made it two but Chris Wood's effort was disallowed for offside.
On the stroke of half time Pablo Hernandez made it two, when he won a race with Maxwell for a loose ball in the penalty area. After the early scare Leeds deserved the lead at the break.
Wood and Barkhuizen took paint off the woodwork in a busy second half and former striker Jermaine Beckford received a warm welcome from the home fans, he nearly got a goal back for the visitors but he missed a cut back from the lively Barkhuizen.
Substitute's Souleymane Doukara and Stuart Dallas fashioned another chance but Doukara's effort bounced wide, Baptiste was then sent off just before the end of normal time for a poor challenge on Pablo Hernandez, in injury time, Doukara again found himself free on goal after a great ball from Kalvin Phillips found him, this time the striker made no mistake.
A much needed win and important three points with Newcastle (1-2 at Wednesday), Reading (1-7 at Norwich!) and Huddersfield (0-2 at Forest) all loosing.
Maybe another couple of wins to guarantee the playoffs.
Kemar Roofe celebrates the opener.
Garry Monk: "It was really important to respond and we were determined to after two defeats, away from home and that was key. We spoke as a group after the game at Brentford and felt what is important is when the group (of players) is focused on showing what they are capable of, it's thenthe deliver their best performances.
In the the games earlier in the week, there was a lot of talk going on about league positions and points and this would mean this or that and I understand that. We're fully aware of where we are in the league, but the the key is focusing and always showing what they are capable of. On the crowd. "Once again our fans here at Elland Road were incredible again."
Grayson: "Leeds are playing effective football. They've got threats and fantastic home form. There's no reason why they can't be promoted."
He's still Leeds!
Andrew Butterwick's review of the superb win over Simon Grayson's Preston.
Absolutely superb Andrew, as always. Thank you.
Most plaudits went for Roofe, Hernandez and Ayling as the stand out performers yesterday but the young centre midfielders Kalvin Phillips and Ronaldo Vieira also were praised for their efforts, Luke Ayling, surely the bargain of the season also reaped fans appreciation.
Anthony Knockaert wins the EFL Championship player of the year, ahead of Chris Wood and Dwight Gayle.
Pontus Jansson and Chris Wood are named in the EFL team of the season.
Heidi Haigh's marvellous Monday review of the 3-0 win over Preston
Superb as usual Heidi. Thank you.
Tickets for Leeds' last game of the regular season versus Norwich go on sale and it is expected to sell out, there may be one more game within the 'Theatre of Hope' before the season ends, fingers, toes crossed!
Leeds' last 12 games at Elland Road:
31/36 points won
10 clean sheets
6 capacity crowds of 30,000+
Thanks to @LUFCDATA
Kemar Roofe named in the team of the week for his superb display in the game with Preston.
Crewe Alexandra under 23's 3 Leeds 2: Leeds' scorers Sammy Amissah and Mike Taylor.
Band of Brothers
Borussia Dortmund v Monaco, postponed until tomorrow (12th) after explosions on or near home team's bus. Superb gesture by the fans of Monaco singing "Dortmund, Dortmond" before the game was called off.
Garry Monk's look ahead to the Good Friday meeting with Newcastle United: Marco Silvestri is unlikely to feature again this season, he underwent a operation on his knee, Hadi Sacko and Liam Bridcutt fit to be considered for the trip to Newcastle, thought Leeds 'played the occasion' last time the two clubs met, expects Leeds to be very different this time, believes that Leeds have achieved pre season expectations and if the playoffs are reached it's a massive bonus, joked that the calculator isn't out just yet and the team aren't thinking of how quickly the playoffs can be guaranteed.
Considers Peacock-Farrell is enough cover for Rob Green, also said it was Silvestri's decision to have the surgery, on the remaining games: "Everything’s in our hand, we want to keep it that way and make sure we can say that at the end of the season.”
A Happy, Confident Monk.
On a Radio Leeds interview later in the day he said this about his future at the club: "The owner's have said we will sit down in June to discuss this, now it's all about focusing on the football. It would be selfish for me to talk about my contract at this time of the season, it's about the club & team now."
Rafa Benitez: "We did well against Leeds in the first game, and we play at home tomorrow. Hopefully we can play at the level we know we can." His thought's on Garry Monk: "Garry's done a great job, he's a good manager. I could see in the beginning that they were under pressure, but he is a great manager. He's still young and has great potential."
We've met before
Newcastle 2 Leeds 0 LC Sept 13
Newcastle 1 Leeds 0 Prem Jan 04
Newcastle 0 Leeds 2 Prem Sept 02
Newcastle 3 Leeds 1 Prem Jan 02
Newcastle 2 Leeds 1 Prem Dec 00
Leeds travel to Newcastle buoyed by the 3-0 win over Preston and a much improved performance. Leeds need to show their hosts less respect than they did in the first meeting of the season, back in November, Newcastle didn't have to get out of second gear to beat their hosts. Our host's have struggled in some of their latest home games and Huddersfield, Wolves, Blackburn, Sheffield and Fulham have left St James Park with all three points.
Hopefully Garry Monk will give the eleven who started last Saturday another chance to prove themselves against another good team, the midfield looked more mobile with Ronaldo Vieira and Kalvin Phillips in the middle two and Roofe added much needed impetus up front.
A draw without doubt would be a great result at this stage of the season but if Leeds can 'nick' a early goal it may get the home fans restless and with the defence playing so well a win is a distinct possibility. Leeds 1-0.
Newcastle United v Leeds
Team News: One change, Liam Bridcutt replacing Ronaldo Vieira.
Team: Green, Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Berardi, Bridcutt(c), Phillips, Roofe, Hernandez, Pedraza, Wood.
For the early part of the game Leeds gave as good as they got, Alfonso Pedraza and Kemar Roofe desperately unlucky their efforts were denied, first by the woodwork then a instinctive save by Darlow in the Newcastle goal. Gradually the home side put Leeds under pressure but were met by a blue, yellow and Green wall which repelled every effort they could throw at them.
It was a good half from Leeds, despite Newcastle having the best opportunities.
The second half was like a 'black and white' wave, Leeds struggled to hold on to possession and it was only a matter of time before the defiant Green was beaten by a Lascelles header, he nearly saved that too!
From there onwards it was left to Green, Bartley and Jansson to thwart the Geordies from extending their lead, Sacko, Doukara and Taylor were used to try and get behind a retreating Newcastle defence and in the very last minute of added time Pablo Hernandez's pass found Kemar Roofe who intelligently clipped the ball into the box for Chris Wood to volley the equaliser and send three thousand fans in the 'gods' at St James' and a pub in Keighley into lively celebrations.
Chris Wood makes it 1-1
It wasn't pretty and I still can't believe that Leeds came out of the game with anything but after Wednesday, Huddersfield and Fulham winning the point felt like a win. Four games to go!
Only downside was Jansson's booking, one more and he's suspended for three games.
Men of the Match: Rob Green, Kyle Bartley and Pontus Jansson, immense at the back.
Garry Monk: "I think we must have a granite chin. When you get an equaliser at the end of a game like that, it feels much better in one changing room than the other. Of course it felt good in ours.
“Every point is going to be crucial to every team now and we’re no different. We were against a team who are going to get promoted and it was always going to be difficult.
“We had an early chance which we should have taken but after that we gave away too many set-pieces and eventually one paid. In the second half we didn’t play well but we showed what spirit we have, that determination to never give up. We’ve shown it many times and we were able to show quality in that one moment. Sometimes that’s all it takes.”
Rafa Benitez: "I'm pleased with the performance of the team, the commitment, the passion, the effort, the way that we played, the chances that we had. I'm disappointed because we made a mistake at the end - and when I say at the end, 95 minutes."
Andrew Butterwick's superb blog on the dramatic draw at St James'
Superb blog Andrew it must have been incredible in the 'gods', it was pretty superb in a pub in Keighley too. Thank you
We will never forget them
28 years ago today and still in our hearts.
By Keith Ingham
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