Leeds United 2 Hull City 1: YEP jury verdict

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Maybe the YEP jury should undertake to make pessimistic forecasts every week if the result is the same as the one on Saturday afternoon.

You could say that United are an unpredictable side but, in many ways, based on previous form, beating Hull was entirely predictable. Like Derby away and Cardiff at home before, we always seem to turn it on just when you least expect it.

Man of the match contender Liam Bridcutt.

Man of the match contender Liam Bridcutt.

It’s a good job as well because without those more surprising results we would be firmly in the relegation mire.

The credit for this win should go mainly to Steve Evans who changed the shape of the side to accommodate a five-man midfield. It was less the numbers and more the personnel that made the difference, however. Liam Bridcutt brought a confident swagger to the side, broke down Hull’s play and made United tick. It was one of the best defensive midfield performances I’ve seen in a white shirt for a number of years – albeit with limited competition.

One thing I can’t praise Evans for is the persistent inclusion of Scott Wootton over Sam Byram. Pre-match, Evans had said that Byram’s playing time would be limited until he committed his future to the club, a policy that essentially means every player’s contract ends a year early.

Imagine our League 1 promotion campaign with Jermaine Beckford sitting on the bench for the season. It would have been ludicrous and so is this. It came as no surprise when Hull skipped easily around Scott Wootton to put in the cross for their goal and that set up a nervy second half. United had been excellent before the break but panic set in at times later in the game and we seemed content to defend our lead.

Byram did eventually make a rare appearance and we rode our luck to a valuable and unlikely win. Marco Silvestri also made some excellent stops to keep us in the game.

Inevitably, the word to look out for now is consistency and that’s what we’ll be looking for at Charlton and Wolves.

Apart from the three points the most satisfying aspect of the victory was in the team spirit. Seeing every outfield player dive on Tom Adeyemi shows that some spirit lingers despite the circus that surrounds the club and a vocal Elland Road seemed to come alive once again.

Leeds United is battered and bruised and has to put up with an awful lot but you’ll never kill it.

Man of the match: Liam Bridcutt.

MATTHEW EVANS

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Leeds produced one of their performances of the season to beat Hull 2-1 at Elland Road.

It was a deserved win after a impressive first half. Despite the win there was bad news pre-game as Sam Byram turned down the latest offer from the club and looks certain to leave either in January or in the summer. Why any player would want to commit himself long term to the club at the moment is not surprising.

The formation had a 4-2-3-1 look to it, Massimo would be very happy with that! Hull started well and Silvestri’s agility kept Bruce’s goal-bound effort out in the early minutes. Leeds took the lead on the half hour when Wood finished off a great move involving Cook and Dallas. Mowatt nearly doubled the lead but his shot came back off the bar. Leeds were outplaying Hull and it was no surprise when Adeyemi swept home a rebound. A deserved two-goal lead at the break.

Being two goals behind, Hull must have had a few harsh words from Steve Bruce in the break because they came at Leeds from the start of the second period and got the goal they needed when Elmohamady scored, Silvestri produced a great stop to deny Diame’s goal bound effort. A much needed win for both team and supporters. Well done lads you proved me wrong.

Men of the match: Chris Wood and Stuart Dallas.

KEITH INGHAM

After a week dominated by pies it was Hull who were humbled as United stormed to a thoroughly deserved win. Despite an early second-half goal from the visitors, United dug in with two first-half goals already in the bag to earn their crust.

Man of the match: Liam Bridcutt.

GARY NEWBOULD

Leeds United’s unpredictability is almost becoming predictable! Many fans were joking before this game that “we’ll probably go and beat Hull”. That based on the fact that every time we play a team out of form near the foot of the table we lose and yet more often than not when we appear to be out of form playing a decent team near the top, we win!

The first half saw an excellent display from every player in white and the new 4-1-4-1 formation seemed to suit us. Leeds bossed the game and scored two good goals and looked to be coasting. In the second half Hull dominated but with the help of an excellent display from Silvestri and a bit of luck we saw it through.

Man of the match: Liam Bridcutt.

DAVID WATKINS

What a massive three points. The first half was exceptional; we played good football and threatened. You could see the quality Hull had but we really matched them. Liam Bridcutt was fantastic, looking for the ball and controlling the game.

Man of the match: Liam Bridcutt.

JAMES HARRISON

If you stay around someone long enough you start to be influenced by them and Leeds United are certainly showing signs of the erratic behaviour which has become Massimo Cellino’s trademark.

After two of the most inept displays I have witnessed, the Whites produced a performance that had the support forgetting “pie tax” and left them unable to take their eyes of what was going on in front of them. Leeds tore into a Hull side who have been one of the best in this increasingly average division and thoroughly deserved the two goal lead at half-time. Nerves were shredded as United hung on in the second period but looked oddly competent in keeping Hull at bay.

Man of the match: Chris Wood.

STEPHEN CLARK

Marco Silvestri

Leeds United: Goalkeeper Silvestri pays a fond farewell to Leeds United