Derby County 0
Leeds United 1 (Roofe 55)
Well I think this game proves what a lot of us – including the great man Marcelo himself – have been saying about our recent results. Too many people are still looking at the result of a game and, if we lose, automatically condemning the performance as rubbish, or lacking in sprit or suggesting our “form” has gone. They are comments made even more staunchly when the game is a big one and that is fuelled no doubt by the disappointment felt by us fans. We have to learn to think more objectively! Difficult I know – especially for us Leeds fans as the ticket to the promised land is being waved under our noses but kept just out of reach!
As I’ve said on these pages lately, I haven’t seen much difference in the way we’ve played recently – in terms of the box to box domination of possession, the number of chances we create etc etc. What has been different though is that our already poor ability in front of goal worsened even more, we’ve made some daft errors at the back, and , never underestimate it, we’ve not exactly had the rub of the green, particularly with officials decisions and the bounce of the ball.
Yesterday, we were far more “efficient” all over the pitch so, while our match stats were, as they always are, significantly better than the opposition, this time we managed to score one goal from three shots on target while, at the other end we looked assured and error free and, of course, this time we had a little piece of good fortune when a liner had the balls to stand up to his ref and demand he reconsider what he clearly saw as an incorrect decision – which I’m sure even the most biased of Derby fans wouldn’t now argue with having seen the replays.
The relentless manner in which we pressed Derby yesterday suggests all is still well and confirms to me that we have the tools still, even keeping in mind all the players we have missing, to beat any side we come up against, be it the return v Derby, Villa or West Brom; we play better football than all of them. We do still need to improve that finishing; even yesterday there were a few examples of some very poor decision making in front of goal and of course we need to stay alert at the back. We also need to keep our tempers in check and avoid getting embroiled in any controversy on the pitch – we saw Mateusz Klich stupidly put his head into an opponent yesterday that, on another day could have ruined both that game and our chances of promotion! There were lots of examples where we did stay calm and I applaud that; on several occasions Derby tackles were agricultural to say the least and there was plenty of jibing and pulling and tugging going on. Stay above it lads if you can!
Same again please on Wednesday!
Derby County Leeds Utd
Possession 44% 56%
Shots 7 12
On Target 0 3
Corners 1 8
Fouls Committed 12 15