Bielsa disappointed as Leeds United fail to make dominance count in Yorkshire derby

Leeds United midfielder Mateusz Klich
Leeds United midfielder Mateusz Klich

Head coach Marcelo Bielsa reckoned it was probably the best performance since he took over, but saw Leeds United only claim a point despite dominating the Yorkshire derby at Sheffield Wednesday.

A superb Mateusz Klich goal earned the Whites a 1-1 draw after they had been trailing to another special strike by Adam Reach, but a point was not a true reward for a display that saw Leeds dominate possession and manage 25 efforts on goal.

Reach came up with a spectacular volley from 30 yards to open the scoring right at the end of the first half, making Leeds pay for missing several chances.

They were also unlucky as Barry Douglas hit the post with a header.

Midfielder Klich’s fourth goal of the season came from a curling finish from outside the box from some smart build-up play nine minutes into the seconds half.

But although they did almost all of the attacking for the rest of the game they could not find a winner with Tyler Roberts going closes with a header that was cleared off the goalline.

Leeds may well lose top spot over the weekend as a result, but Bielsa was pleased with the way his team played and bounced back from a first league defeat in midweek.

He said: “I’m truly disappointed. I don’t like to judge the performance of the opponent, but the fact that we had 25 chances to score talks about what we deserved.

“Normally we need three chances to score a goal. It’s a statistic common to teams who lead their championship. But in the previous game against Birmingham we needed eight chances to score. Tonight we needed 25 chances.

“When we evaluate a performance we take into consideration the chances we create. Then we see if the team is efficient.”

Asked if it was the team’s best performance of the season, Bielsa said: “I think so. We played other games at this level - when we won against Preston and against Norwich - but in those cases the score was different.

“We can’t say we are satisfied with the result. In the last two games we got one point from a possible six. Of course I’m concerned (about a record of one win in five matches) but it’s hard for me to sum up the common element of five games.

“We played very well,” he said. “Against Birmingham we didn’t play very well. The link between the two games is the work we needed to create chances to score. The difficulty the opponent has to score against us is not as high as our difficulties to score against them.”

Match Facts

Sheffield Wednesday 1

(Reach 45)

Leeds United 1

(Klich 54)

Friday, September 28, 2018

Sky Bet Championship

Attendance: 26,717

Sheffield Wednesday: Dawson, Lees, Hector, Thorniley, Baker (Palmer 59), Pelupessy, Bannan, Reach, Penney; Forestieri (Joao 81), Fletcher (Nuhiu 77).

Leeds United: Peacock-Farrell, Ayling, Jansson, Cooper, Douglas, Phillips, Harrison, Saiz (Forshaw 90), Klich, Alioski, Roberts.

Referee: Robert Jones