Leeds return to Championship summit after battling win over Hull

Two late goals lifted Leeds to the top of the Championship as they saw off Yorkshire rivals Hull 2-0.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men notched their seventh straight win in front of more than 35,000 at Elland Road.

Leeds leap-frogged West Brom to the top if the pile, for at least 24 hours anyway, as their mean defence also held on to keep an impressive fourth straight clean sheet to boot.

Despite such a strong recent run, Leeds boss Bielsa opted to make a change to his starting line-up to take on the Tigers.

It was an unsurprising one, however, with Kalvin Phillips returning to the hosts’ engine room after suspension, in place of the unlucky Ezgjan Alioski.

The Tigers created the first opening after seven minutes, with the in-form Jarrod Bowen shrugging off a couple of half-challenges before disappointingly dragging a 20-yard drive well off target.

Leeds’ first clear-cut opportunity came in the 20th minute.

Helder Costa darted down the right flank, played a neat one-two with Mateusz Klich, but then could only hit a slightly scuffed shot straight at grateful goalkeeper George Long.

The game was beginning to open up and Hull front-man Tom Eaves headed into the side-netting as he rose to meet Kamil Grosicki’s out-swinging corner-kick.

As the interval approached, Leeds were beginning to get back on top and they went mighty close when Pablo Hernandez turned sweetly inside Elland Road old boy Eric Lichaj before fizzing an angled effort inches over the top.

Within 10 seconds of the restart the Tigers again threatened to take a shock lead.

Eaves did well to take down a hopeful ball forward, before swivelling and volleying a couple of feet wide from the edge of the box.

Both sides were probing for an opening as the hour mark approached, though it was the visitors who were next to go close again.

It was the dangerous Eaves once more who latched on to Bowen’s through-ball, only to be thwarted by an instinctive one-handed save from Kiko Casilla.

Leeds finally came alive as the game entered the final quarter and in the 68th minute Jack Harrison attempted to convert Patrick Bamford’s drag-back, only to be denied by Long’s agile stop.

The deadlock was finally broken by Leeds in the 73rd minute and in rather fortunate circumstances.

Costa crossed in low from the right and, as Hull defender Jordy De Wijs dived in in an attempt to clear, he could only divert the ball over his own line from a couple of yards out.

Nine minutes later the lead was doubled.

As the hosts broke after Eaves had been denied by a goal-line clearance at one end, Bamford thumped the post at the other, with sub Alioski lashing home the rebound from the acutest of angles.

Stay updated with the latest news, gossip and football stories by following us @Football_P

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

Serving quality football news from around the globe. No click-bait.