LEEDS United had to settle for a goalless draw at home to Championship visitors Queens Park Rangers as part of a frustrating afternoon at Elland Road.
The Hoops squandered the contest’s best chances in a game in which Luke Ayling picked up his tenth yellow card of the season and will now face a two-match ban.
QPR had the game’s first attempt on goal in the fourth minute but Luke Freeman’s volley sailed well wide.
But the Hoops then went mightily close to taking a seventh-minute lead when Freeman’s corner was flicked on by Darnell Furlong and whizzed across the six yard box and just inches in front of Conor Washington who narrowly failed to find the touch to convert a tap in.
From another corner six minutes later, former Leeds striker Matt Smith nodded a free header over the bar.
And United were then once again saved by ‘keeper Rob Green within the next 60 seconds when Washington raced through on goal but saw his low shot saved by the 37-year-old’s legs.
Leeds gradually threatened to get into gear and Alfonso Pedraza’a low shot was blocked inside a packed area in the 19th minute.
QPR then survived three Leeds corners in quick succession but the Hoops continued to look dangerous and only a crucial cleared header from Pontus Jansson prevented Smith from latching on to a fine cross from Washington.
A 33rd-minute looped header from Smith then sailed over before Jake Bidwell fired well wide.
United’s frustrations then grew further two minutes later when Luke Ayling was booked for sliding into Bidwell, landing the right back a two-match ban.
Ayling attempted to atone with a curling effort five minutes before the break that sailed well wide.
A better attempt arrived from Kemar Roofe two minutes later but the winger’s shot smashed into Nedum Onuoha and behind for a corner, which proved the last effort of a disappointing half.
Whites head coach Garry Monk resisted the temptation to make any changes at the break and QPR continued on the front foot in the second half.
After Alfonso Pedraza was booked for crunching into Furlong, Green had to beat away a header from Smith before Bidwell fired a tame effort that Green easily dealt with.
Washington’s cut back to Smith then threatened danger before Furlong fired over.
Monk decided enough was enough and hauled off Kemar Roofe for Sacko just short of the hour but QPR then squandered the best chance of the game in the 63rd minute when Washington turned inside Kyle Bartley but fired wide from inside the box.
Leeds were offering very little though Chris Wood put a header wide in the 68th minute from a Pablo Hernandez cross.
Souleymane Doukara was then brought on for Pedraza with 17 minutes left.
From a right flank Hadi Sacko cross soon after, Wood went tumbling down in the area but referee Tim Robinson ignored the striker’s claims for a penalty.
Pablo Hernandez them failed to make the most of a free-kick 25 yards out, after which Monk made his final change in bringing on Eunan O’Kane for Vieira with 12 minutes left.
United were being roared on by just over 30,0000 inside Elland Road but to no avail.
A superb raking pass from Doukara to Sacko in the 89th minute raised hopes but Sacko failed to produce an end product.
Leeds were then given four minuutes of stoppage time which turned into five but in truth never looked likely to break QPR down.
Leeds United: Green, Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Berardi, Bridcutt, Vieira (O’Kane 78), Roofe (Sacko 59), Pedraza (Doukara 73), Hernandez, Wood. Subs not used: Silvestri, Cooper, Taylor, Dallas, Doukara.
QPR: Smithies, Furlong, Onuoha, Lynch, Bidwell, Wszolek (N’Gbakoto 79), Hall, Luongo, Freeman, Smith (Sylla 78), Washington (Mackie 80). Subs not used: Ingram, Goss, Manning, Morrison.
Referee: Tim Robinson.