09 November 2019 18:48
Leeds United's Patrick Bamford celebrates at Elland Road. Marcelo Bielsa named an unchanged line-up for the visit of Rovers with Barry Douglas returning to the bench in place of Mateusz Bogusz. The game got off to a slow start at United dominated the ball with Stuart Dallas threatening early on as he saw a shot fly over from distance. United, though, opened the scoring on the half hour mark as Luke Ayling latched onto a wonderful through ball from Tyler Roberts. The Leeds defender was sent tumbling to the floor by a clumsy challenge from Tosin Adarabioyo with referee Gavin Ward pointing to the spot.
Sign up to our Leeds United newsletter The i newsletter cut through the noise Thanks for signing up! Sorry, there seem to be some issues. Please try again later. Submitting... Patrick Bamford stepped up and sent Christian Walton the wrong way as he found the back of the net for the first time since August to break a 10-game scoring drought. It took Bielsa's men just five minutes to double their lead as Kalvin Phillips played an inch perfect ball over the top of the Rovers defence. Bamford collected the ball and laid off a pass for Jack Harrison as the winger slotted home from just inside the box. United were in control but Tony Mowbray's side gave themselves a lifeline just before the break as Derek Williams headed home a Stewart Downing corner just before the interval. Neither side made an changes at the break with the tie finely poised. Harrison flashed another effort as goal before the winger saw two chances blocked in quick succession by the retreating defence as Leeds pushed on. Liam Cooper forced Walton into more action with a drilled effort but Rovers held the Whites at bay in their search for a third. United's captain was then forced off through injury as Gaetano Berardi stepped off the bench in his place. Pablo Hernandez was also a late change as Helder Costa made way for the Spaniard with 10 minutes remaining. Harrison again saw another opportunity flash wide of the post from a tight angle as Leeds searched for a goal which would kill the game. Walton again parried another long-range effort from Tyler Roberts but it was a close as the hosts would come as they held on for all three points. Leeds United: Casilla, Ayling, Cooper (Berardi 72), White, Dallas, Phillips, Klich, Costa (Hernandez 80), Harrison, Roberts, Bamford. Subs: Meslier, Davis, Gotts, Clarke, Douglas. Blackburn Rovers: Walton, Bennett, Nyambe, Adarabioyo, Williams, Travis, Downing, Armstrong, Dack, Holtby, Gallagher. Subs: Leutwiler, Bell, Rothwell, Buckley, Johnson, Evans, Gallagher Referee: Gavin Ward 15:50 KEY EVENT Half-time player ratings Kiko Casilla: One claim from a speculative Stewart Downing shot was all he had to do for the first 40 minutes and had little chance with the goal. Luke Ayling: Off his sickbed to keep his place in the side and was playing a more traditional right-back role this week. Got forward early and often and it was his run that drew the foul for Leeds' penalty. A real threat going forward, but will have to take some responsibility for the Rovers goal, which came from an excellent corner by Downing. Liam Cooper: As solid as ever as Leeds easily dealt with the Rovers attack. Very efficient with the ball. Ben White: One day we'll be able to write something other than 'cool and composed at the back, putting in several key blocks and interceptions while also playing some probing balls forward.' So far, today is not that day. Stuart Dallas: In at left-back this week as Bielsa's side were sent out in a in a more familiar 4-1-4-1 set-up. Had a decent chance to open the scoring when play opened up for him, but saw his shot from just outside the area go over the bar. Needed treatment after that chance, as he appeared to have hurt his lower back. Kalvin Phillips: There to mop up a few loose balls in the opening exchanges, but was caught out on the ball mid-way through the first half with Blackburn unable to capitalise. Helder Costa: Continues to look better in this side. We're seeing more of his pace now, whether it's down the right-hand side or surging into the middle. Mateusz Klich: Fresh from his new contract being announced this morning, the Pole was in for his 62nd consecutive Championship start and was happy to do the grafting in the middle and let his teammates take advantage. Tyler Roberts: Started on the front foot, driving forward in the early exchanges and it was his vision that brought about the penalty as it was his superb through ball to Ayling that brought about the foul. Quickly making himself undroppable. Jack Harrison: Had Stuart Dallas for company on the left-hand side after his solo stint on the flank last week. Looks to be full of confidence at the moment and it showed when he slotted home Leeds' second. Patrick Bamford: The drought is over! Elland Road erupted when Bamford slotted home this penalty with the minimum of fuss. The crowd wanted that goal as much as he did. Then quickly turned provider as he showed real quality to control the ball and play in Harrison for Leeds' second. Bueno.