All the talk in the run up to this match is the infamous battle at Elland Road when Bielsa made Leeds concede a goal after Leeds United had just scored following a foul. Many of the players from both teams played tonight. Both teams had something to prove.
It was a dreadful start for Leeds United . Questions continue with Helder Costa who lost El Ghazi from a corner who had an easy goal to score. Considering he has been given a start over Harrison he has failed in his first job on the field – defending. Good response from Leeds United in how they attack with Raphinha lining up Roberts whose full on shot was well defended. El Ghazi, returning to Elland Road after his infamous sending off in the Championship, was on form tonight constantlylooking for more opportunities. It was a difficult first n15 minutes with too many corners given.
Aston Villa’s plan was to pack the defence when Leeds United attack and then morph into attack formation. It worked in the first half to nullify Leeds attack. The pitch also played its part with Bamford slipping early on.
Leeds United began to grow in the game with a run by Raphinha in to the penalty box that left Villa players looking on in awe. Llorente continues to look for goals with a header on target from the corner. Raphinha was involved in most Leeds United attacks. Klich also getting back to his best with some intelligent runs. Roberts nearly cost a goal with a lazy move in a late Leeds United corner in the first half.
Bielsa did his pep talk again at half time about upping the energy and getting the ball out of our own half – we simply dominated the second half with Aston Villa reduced to long balls to El Ghazi who hoofed them from a distance to nowhere in particular. In the end a combination of Raphinha not firing on all pistons and a n Aston Villa formation that parked a bus in front of their goal meant the second half passed by with little action to remember it by. Aston Villa will be happy – they were gifted a goal early in the first half and spent the rest of the match defending it, and Leeds United, relying too much on Raphinha, never showed their ruthlessness in front of goal.
Man of the match: Raphinha[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]