Leeds United: Front pair striking up a strong partnership

Marcus Antonsson celebrates his first goal in a Leeds United shirt.
Marcus Antonsson celebrates his first goal in a Leeds United shirt.
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Marcus Antonsson said he and Chris Wood had the makings of a strong partnership at Leeds United after the strikers shared three goals in yesterday’s pre-season win over Shamrock Rovers.

Antonsson claimed a brace on his maiden start for Leeds, scoring in either half to register his first goals since joining United in a £1.5m move from Swedish club Kalmar last month.

The 25-year-old was Leeds’ first arrival of the summer and he followed up a lively outing as a substitute against Shelbourne on Wednesday by helping to seal a 3-0 win over Shamrock Rovers with a strike on seven minutes and a close-range header early in the second half.

Wood, who finished last season as Leeds’ top scorer, also took advantage of a below-strength Rovers side by converting a 31st-minute penalty after home defender Trevor Clarke fouled Kemar Roofe.

The result at the Tallaght Stadium in Dublin sent Leeds home from their two-week training camp in Ireland with back-to-back victories and Antonsson drew encouragement from his goals and his partnership with Wood.

Antonsson told the YEP: “It’s nice to feel that I’ve started scoring goals here and it’s good to show the guys that I can score. Getting a clean sheet and winning the game is even better, even though it’s just a friendly.

“I’ve played with Chris for two games in a row now and I think it’s working very well between us. Usually in Sweden I played as the number nine, that was my position, but I can make my runs from the number 10 position too so it’s not a problem for me.

“Chris scored as well and I think that every game that we play together, the better we’ll get. We will look better and better together.”

Monk and his players flew home to England earlier today and will spend this week preparing for a friendly at Guiseley on Friday night and a visit to Peterborough United the following day.

Monk is expected to split his squad for those games, sending different teams to Nethermoor and London Road.

Antonsson, who completed 65 minutes against Shamrock Rovers, said the fortnight-long camp in Ireland, during which Leeds trained at the Irish FA’s headquarters in Abbotstown, had made a positive impression on him after his arrival from Sweden.

“I’m coming to a new country and that can be hard but it’s much easier when you’re coming to a good group,” he said.

“There are lot of good guys here, I haven’t found it difficult, and I feel like we’ve all improved while we’ve been here. I’ve got a good feeling about it all.”

Kyle Bartley

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