Cut And Pasted At Elland Road
LEEDS blog: *cut and paste from Birmingham game here*
Boro bossed the opening spell of the painful 2-1 defeat at Elland Road, played some sweeping football, picked their way forward with some crisp passing movement and created a string of passes to dominate for 40 minutes in the first half. Unfortunately the current conversion rate is very poor. Right now all Boro's striker need three or four chances to chalk up a goal.
Lukas Jutkiewicz smashed one in - via a little deflection and at the second time of asking - but he also squandered two more golden chances after the break, both times taking one touch too many and nudging it just too far wide. One was lashed into the side-netting and the other squeezed through the keeper's legs and then clipped the post and went out. Then there were a couple of scrambles, otherwise anonymous Marvin Emnes sent in an overhead kick that grazed the upright and Jason Steele - yes, Jason Steele - had a header charged down at the death.
Leeds had maybe four chances and Becchio scored two of them.
Boro were on top in the first half when it was a football match but failed to make it count and then Leeds clawed back into just before the break. In the second half Leeds made it more of a scrap, broke up Boro's rhythm and hit long diagonals on the break. They got their rewards with a goal from a poorly defended corner (stop me if you've heard this one before). Boro picked it up again in a frantic all out assault late on but couldn't salvage the point they probably deserved. Frustrating and disappointing - but probably par for the course for a not quite fully shaped Championship side.
It must be said it was a fantastic game to watch: it was all action, end-to-end pulsating action. It was competitive and full-blooded and high-tempo with sliding tackles flying in, although never dirty. And the rain-lashed surface making for plenty of heart-stopping errors in both halves. It was hugely entertaining and played in a fantastic atmosphere that was charged and hostile and supportive and very loud. It was a great match.
If we can play like that every week, but just tweak it - 10% more in each box - we'll do OK. No one ever said it would be easy. And if you had been offered fourth at Christmas back in August you'd have taken it. We are still in touch with two home games coming up and players coming back. We're doing alright.