Mix of experienced, new, and under 23s playing tonight. Alongside a lack of centre halves with Phillips playing out of position there. Opportunity for Daniel James to shine. Rodrigo needs to show he is worth his sign on fee which had been missing recently. And Joe Gelhardt ready to impress in the first team. So, with all the subs the was Bielsa putting the the children first. But will the mix gel together?
James was used well on the left to get balls into the box. He needs to link up better with Tyler Roberts and Rodrigo in front of goal.
Fulham stayed lively but were restricted to long range shots – Meslier tested and relied on Phillips to collect a spilled save before Fulham pounced.
It was 5,500 Leeds fans you could hear whilst half the stadium was empty. My favourite was them taunting Fulham fans with “is this a library?”
Just before half time Rodrigo has a free kick on goal that was saved. We were getting closer. But then Fulham have their free kick on goal.
Cresswell is tall. We need a tall defender. Cresswell is the future for Leeds in defence putting in a solid defence.
After two years Adam Forshaw finally got a run out in the first team replacing Roberts. That left Rodrigo as a lone striker – a rare event for Leeds.
Quiet second half with Muniz going close for Fulham. Leeds not getting hold of the game with Somerville picking up a yellow card. Arrival of Geldhart replacing Klich gave the Leeds fans something to roar about.
Whatever Bielsa’s strategy for winning this match it was certainly involved giving the future a run out. Next sub on is another teenager with McKinstry replacing Somerville who had lost his way.
Fulham certainly thought Bielsa putting his children on was an opportunity and for a moment I thought I could hear their fans singing as Fulham applied some pressure,
This referee is a chatty man. Taking the opportunity many times to give some friendly advice to players.
The lack of goals for Leeds was simple. Too many stray passes. Phillips added to that with many long balls not reaching their target. That said he was solid in defence. Instead it was Fulham with the chances.
Two minutes into extra time Cresswell heads a free kick but Rodrigo is not close enough with his head. At the death Firpo has the last shot on target but blocked.
I hate penalties. There is nothing I can do to control the panicky nerves that take over. This one was just as ridiculous. Bielsa had put all his children on during the match. The senior players missed a couple and we went to sudden death with the youngsters delivering all their penalties and Meslier finally diving to the left and making one save to put Leeds through.
Man of the match: Kalvin Phillips