As depressing as it is to report, Leeds United were given a footballing lesson by a team destined for the Premier League.
The gulf in class is obvious, but the way Leeds gifted them the two goals is so galling. Time after time this defence has failed to do the job they are very well paid to do, bloody defend! It’s back to the drawing board for Paul Heckingbottom, but at least that’s the tough start to his Leeds tenure out of the way.
Hecky gave Bailey Peacock-Farrell the start many fans have been asking for since last Friday’s heinous display by Felix Wiedwald.
Two more changes to the team that played without conviction at Boro were Hadi Sacko and Adam Forshaw for Eunan O’Kane and Ezgjan Alioski who were dropped to the bench.
Leeds started brightly but found Wolves in a resolute mood, slowly the team at the top of the league upped through the gears and Peacock-Farrell had saved excellently from Cavaleiro. Jota and Bonatina both had chances before the opener came from a corner, Siass heading in Douglas’ corner with the Leeds defence in complete disarray. Leeds lost captain Liam Cooper through injury, Mathew Pennington replaced him.
Wolves split the Leeds defence time after time and only bad finishing and Peacock-Farrell kept the score to one, he again saved brilliantly from Bonatini, when the player was through one on one with the youngster. A second goal was coming and it arrived just on half time, another corner found Batth’s head, his effort crashed back off the bar but Boly headed in the rebound with the Leeds rearguard again flat-footed. 2-0 to Wolves at the break.
Leeds brought Pablo Hernandez on after the break in place of Hadi Sacko, the Spaniard was surprisingly left out despite being fit to play. Bonatini was proving to be a constant danger and his header was somehow kept out of the goal by a desperate Leeds boot off the line. The only response Leeds offered was a Stuart Dallas effort that didn’t trouble Ruddy.
Jota shook the bar as Wolves continued to press Leeds, they did get the third their display deserved after Jota sent a through ball over the Leeds defence and substitute Benik Afobe lifted the ball over the onrushing Peacock-Farrell and into the net. Game over.
What did we learn from this display? It’s pretty simple, this Leeds side is not good enough and this season is effectively over. The playoffs are gone, only pride is left to play for.
It will be interesting that now the tough six game start for Heckingbottom is over how he now deals with the team’s that are either fighting to stay in the division or, like Leeds the ones that are treading water in mid table. It is hoped there is enough desire left in this mediocre squad to at least give the supporters something to shout and cheer about in the remaining games of the season.
Man of the Match: Bailey Peacock-Farrell, stood tall whilst older and more experienced players hid away.
By Keith Ingham