Leeds United 0
Hull City 2 (Bowen 25, 58)
Marcelo Bielsa has changed many of the old traits we’d got used to seeing under “Old Leeds” but sadly a few do still stubbornly remain. Take today for example; it was the ninth consecutive occasion on which Leeds had failed to win the final game of the calendar year. We used to think it was a problem with the manager’s Christmas regime, too many mince pies maybe or a few pints being allowed, but we all thought Bielsa was different in that respect and he’d have us in peak condition whether it be the first game of the season or the last before the turn of the New Year. Well, seemingly not!
Another trait of Old Leeds was the regular ability to give away a soft goal and that trait too continues to dog us. We gave away a couple early doors at Villa Park and against Blackburn and two more again today and whilst against Villa and Blackburn we were able to score more than they both did, today that little bit of good fortune or a bit of Pablo magic just didn’t materialise. In fact we’ve conceded soft goals all season on and off but it has seldom mattered because in all other areas of the pitch we have been so good.
It’s worth noting also that our actual performance today was hardly a jot different to that which we put up against Blackburn – a look at the match stats shows that clearly – and yet without those little bits of luck here and there, the result is quite different. Maybe we have to just put it down as “one of those days” and move on quickly. The upcoming game with Nottingham Forest will hopefully confirm that to be the case and tonight Marcelo is saying he expects a positive result at the City Ground.
My only observation on the performance today – other than to acknowledge it was little different to any of our recent wins – was that once again, starting with Jack Harrison baffles me. Once again he was removed at half time and the effervescent Jack Clarke looked a 100% better than Harrison did. Now, whilst I can accept that Jack is inexperienced and maybe lacks the fitness to play 90 minutes, surely it is time to try someone else for that first 45 minutes. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Lewis Baker and Jack Harrison add nothing to our skill set and shouldn’t be getting game time.
Other than that, and acknowledging that defence is not our strong point, I have to conclude that it just wasn’t our day and, at the end of the day, 21 points from 24 is a fine run. If we can pick up at least one at the City Ground then all will still be well. But please, let’s not waste 45 minutes with Harrison out there!
Leeds Utd Hull City
Possession 72% 28%
Shots 22 9
On Target 7 3
Corners 8 2
Fouls 13 14