I THOUGHT Leeds did really well at Nottingham Forest on Saturday and they dug in.
It was always going to be a tough game but United worked hard and I thought they did particularly well in the first half.
Forest came into the game more in the second half and our goalkeeper – Marco Silvestri – made a couple of fantastic saves.
And I think we were a little bit fortunate with the offside decisions! They looked like goals didn’t they?!
Sometimes things like that go for you, sometimes they don’t, but it went for us, this time. And Forest could be under a bit of pressure for showing a replay of the second ‘goal’ on the big screen.
You’re not supposed to do that with contentious decisions during a game.
But the team worked extremely hard and I thought we started the game very well again with a couple of great chances through Alex Mowatt and then Jason Pearce, obviously.
The work ethic was really good and young Lewis Cook played really well. He was terrific and to say the boy’s not 18 until February, that augurs very well for the future of the club. Mowatt also started the game well and we looked bright early on.
Forest came into the game more in the second half and you are looking for your goalkeeper to make the saves required and he did that.
And I was pleased for Silvestri because in the last few games he has got a little bit of criticism for some of his decision making.
But he did well and it was good for Neil Redfearn to go to Nottingham Forest with his new assistant Steve Thompson there and pick a point up in their first game together.
Steve is obviously somebody that Neil knows very well and those two will work well together, I think.
It’s been difficult for Neil on his own, in my opinion, because you always need somebody that you trust to be there with you and bounce things off.
Steve may watch the game and see something Neil has missed.
Ultimately, Neil makes the decisions but I think it’s great for him that he has got the man he wants working for him and he will feel more relaxed about that now so hopefully, the club can push forward.
Saturday’s draw will gain them confidence going into Boxing Day’s game but it’s okay getting a result at Forest – now you have got to back it up with a win against Wigan.
Because when you look at that league table now, you have got Rotherham winning away and Brighton getting a point at Wolves.
You don’t want to be getting dragged near the bottom of that table so I think three points against Malky Mackay’s side is essential now. It’s all right picking up a point away from home but you’ve got win your home games and that’s important, especially with the situation we are in.
We are looking at the bottom end of the table, but the thing about this league is that if you win four games you can find yourselves above mid-table.
From there, anything can happen. Look at Fulham’s position now, for example. They were below us but now they will harbouring thoughts of trying to go on a little run and creep in there. For us, that’s a long, long way away and the most important thing for us is to pick points up now and consolidate and it was nice to get a point just before the Christmas break.
I think we’ll be okay under Neil, but football is a results business and you’ve got to get them and that’s why it’s so important we win at Elland Road on Friday afternoon. You have got to believe you are going to win your home games as a starting point for success.
The United fans at Nottingham Forest were great. They left the ground a lot happier then when they left Ipswich.
They’ve seen a bit of hope so they’ve got to carry that into the next game now.
I’ll be at home for Christmas and merry Christmas to all of our readers.
Let’s hope it’s upwards and onwards now for Leeds United as we reach the end of the old year and look forward to the new.