Leeds United boss Christiansen pleased with Monchengladbach performance and improvement on tour

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Thomas Christiansen praised “real progress” in Leeds United’s performance and said he expected his squad to be strengthened by further signings after a 1-1 draw with Borussia Monchengladbach in Austria.

Leeds were denied a victory over the Bundesliga club yesterday as chances went begging at the Silberstadt-Stadium in Schwaz but Christiansen described the display as “our best so far” and revealed that more recruitment was planned.

Leeds players celebrate with Luke Ayling after his early goal against Borussia Monchengladbach.

Leeds players celebrate with Luke Ayling after his early goal against Borussia Monchengladbach.

United sealed a ninth summer signing on Wednesday with a season-long loan deal for Everton’s Matthew Pennington and another centre-back remains a priority for the club ahead of the start of the Championship season.

“We’re working on that, we are looking at it, but in a calm way,” Christiansen said. “The recruitment has been good so far and I don’t want us to start making mistakes. The club are calm.

“We’re trying to sign the best players possible and when you let the pressure come onto you or if you feel obligated to make signings, that’s when you make mistakes. But I think we are starting to see already that the recruitment has been good.”

Pennington made his first appearance for the club during the second-half in Schwaz, replacing Pontus Jansson in the centre of defence.

Thomas Christiansen

Thomas Christiansen

The 22-year-old completed his first training session with Christiansen’s squad on Wednesday and United’s head coach said: “Pennington when he came in did very well. He hadn’t played with any of his team-mates before today or worked with them before yesterday and he jumped in like he’d been a player here for some time.

“There was real progress from all of the players here, a good performance against a difficult team. We’re getting better, it’s clear to see, and the players are understanding what we want.”

Leeds took less than two minutes to open the scoring against Monchengladbach through a Luke Ayling strike but were denied a fourth pre-season win after Germany international Patrick Herrmann converted a free-kick at the start of the second half. Kalvin Phillips and Kemar Roofe struck Borussia’s crossbar in either half.

United, who are spending 10 days in Austria, have one game of their tour remaining against Spanish side Eibar in Jenbach on Sunday.

Matthew Pennington

Matthew Pennington

“We have to go and progress in that one too,” Christiansen said. “It will be difficult to get a good result against Eibar, that’s for sure, but we’re on the right lines and if the team perform like we did today, we will keep getting better.”

Leeds' 
Samuel Saiz gets away from Monchengladbach's Lazlo Benes.

Leeds' Samuel Saiz gets away from Monchengladbach's Lazlo Benes.

Streetwise: Kalvin Phillips, of Leeds United, is muscled out of a challenge by Millwalls Steve Morison. It was the kind of performance, believes David Prutton, that head coach Thomas Christiansen can take plenty of lessons from. (Picture: James Hardisty)

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