Flashback - Leeds United return with a stutter against Cardiff

21 Jun 2021 08:59 am, by YorkshireSquare

Cardiff City 2 (Hoilett 35, Glatzel 71)
Leeds United 0

Sunday 21st June 2020 12:00 | Cardiff City Stadium

It was Sunday 21st June 2020 when Leeds United finally restarted the Championship campaign after months of waiting, weeks of speculation and hundreds of Covid-19 tests conducted. With Fulham slipping up against Brentford and West Brom only managing a point against West Midlands rivals Birmingham City, Leeds had the chance to put some space between themselves and the chasing pack. But this is Leeds United we are talking about and we were playing Cardiff City! It was the home fixture against Cardiff at Elland Road back in December 2019 when the wheels fell off, three nil up when it all went wrong on the hour mark!

There was a similar feel to Leeds United’s performance in South Wales, plenty of possession, plenty of toil but no end result. The Leeds players looked fit enough after the break, fitter than Cardiff certainly but they lacked a sharpness both at the back and up front which ultimately cost them. Wayward passes, poorly weighted final balls and lacklustre shots meant Leeds didn’t make the most of their possession whilst errors at the back were pounced on by Cardiff, who to be fair to them, took them very well.

By its very nature Bielsaball can be risky, in the first half a loose Phillips pass was punched on by Junior Hoylett, who with plenty of work to do ran at the Leeds defence who backed off as Hoylett unleashed his shot. Should Meslier have done better at his near post? Perhaps, but Hoylett took his chance well. In the second half another sloppy pass from Cooper, Nathaniel Mendez-Laing found Robert Glatzel in acres of space, his half volley thundering in off the near post. Once again there were questions around the defenders and keeper but take nothing away from the strike.

At the other end Ayling’s effort was cleared before Jack Harrison could get anything on it, Harrison finds his own effort blocked by teammate Bamford and Roberts close range effort is blocked spectacularly by Alex Smithies. On another day it could have been two nil Leeds but a lack of match sharpness, a lack of concentration cost them at both ends of the pitch. Take nothing away from Cardiff though, they had a game plan, stuck to it and took their chances well. If only Leeds United could take their chances in the same way!

Leeds could have been cruising ten points ahead of the chasing pack needing only five victories to secure promotion but as it was, they headed into the next game just seven points ahead of Fulham. With the memories of the previous seasons final nine games still pretty raw in the memory it felt like it could be another nervy run in for Leeds United fans. But Leeds put Fulham to the sword the week after, a comprehensive three nil victory against their promotion rivals. After a slight stutter with a one all draw against Luton, Leeds would go on to win their last six games finishing ten points ahead of nearest rivals West Brom securing their place back in the Premier League!

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YorkshireSquare wrote on 21 Jun 2021 02:49 pm

Irish Ian wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 1:31 pm Wow this was a year ago.

It will be great to relive the run in again.

What a special year we have had

Strill stuggling to comprehend that we got promoted and played a full Premier League season. All a bit of a whirlwind!

Irish Ian wrote on 21 Jun 2021 01:31 pm

Wow this was a year ago.

It will be great to relive the run in again.

What a special year we have had