Leeds United v West Ham United: Warnock on the warpath

LATE AGONY: Danny Collins heads West Ham's equaliser at Elland Road on Saturday. PIC: Simon Hulme

LATE AGONY: Danny Collins heads West Ham's equaliser at Elland Road on Saturday. PIC: Simon Hulme

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Leeds United defender Paul Connolly revealed how manager Neil Warnock read the riot act after a 90th-minute goal earned West Ham United a 1-1 draw at Elland Road.

Connolly said Warnock “went nuts” in the home dressing room after two important Championship points slipped through United’s fingers on Saturday.

The club were on course for a huge win following an 83rd-minute strike from Luciano Becchio but Danny Collins ensured a share of the points by heading home a West Ham corner in the dying seconds of normal time.

Collins’ goal inflicted fresh damage on Leeds’ prospects of reaching the Championship play-offs, leaving the Yorkshire club five points back with nine games left.

Warnock claimed West Ham striker Carlton Cole should have been penalised for a foul seconds before Collins scored but right-back Connolly said: “The manager went nuts at us for not defending the corner. He let us know what he thought.

“We were all probably waiting for a pat on the back but he came in and went nuts. He told us we should have done better to get three points and that it’s a thin line between success and failure.

“Against West Ham we failed because we didn’t get three points. But if we can get the win tomorrow (against Nottingham Forest) then we’ll be fine.”

Becchio’s goal was United’s reward for a committed performance in front of their largest home crowd of the season, a display typified by crunching tackles by Michael Brown and Paul Robinson.

“The spirit was great,” Connolly said. “The tackles were flying in and we were first to most of them. Our two older lads, Browny and Robbo, led by example and as soon as they smashed someone we all wanted to do the same. We fed off each other’s energy.

“West Ham are a fully committed team and if you don’t match them then you’ve got no chance. But we matched them and probably deserved the three points.”