The YEP jury provide their verdict on Leeds United’s FA Cup clash with Manchester City.
The hosts lined up with a strong side after they got outplayed by Southampton last week.
For United, Neil Warnock picked his usual cup line-up with the usual changes.
A sunny afternoon in Manchester soon became bleak and after quarter of an hour Leeds were 2-0 down and it was game over.
As with most football matches it was won and lost in midfield and with the effectiveness in wide areas City demonstrated, Leeds were not at the races.
There was too much expectancy heaped on Sam Byram, Michael Brown was niggly and Rodolph Austin generally chasing shadows.
It clearly showed it was the Premier League champions against a midtable Championship team crying out for investment.
Despite the large vocal backing of the fans the management and owners do not, to me, currently seem to have the same love and desire to make things work.
The penalty conceded by Tom Lees in my eyes was soft but the resulting penalty conversion added to Yaya Toure’s goal made the rest of the first half a matter of keeping the score down.
Into the second period and Tevez’s goal early on was the beginning of the end for Leeds United and our FA Cup dream.
After the third goal we did actually slightly improve and got a little more play in the final third but our poor final ball cost us.
Jamie Ashdown made a great save and then with 20 minutes left the fourth goal went in and the feeling of the fans towards Neil Warnock and his tenure at Elland Road became increasingly vocal.
I do not believe if we had picked a different team or played different tactics we could have beaten the current English champions.
I always felt City could score when they attacked and also felt this was the end of Leeds United’s season and now we will go through the motions until the season finishes.
The clinical finishing of the hosts and their dominance in midfield ultimately proved the difference.
My man of the match was Sam Byram – if he gets a injury he just gets up and goes again. He’s a true winner and a shining light in a drab season.
Ashdown also gets a great mention with the cups now over for us – I doubt we will see him play again this season, which I feel is a shame. He kept the score down for us at the Etihad.
Man of the match: Sam Byram.
Under fire manager Neil Warnock made changes as expected when Leeds travelled across the Pennines to face Manchester City.
In came Ashdown, Austin, White and Diouf. The bench was full of players brought in during the season by the manager. Enough said.
The experts and the bookies gave Leeds little chance as 14/1 was on offer for a United win, I had a cheeky quid on a 2-1 Whites win at 45/1.
City’s first goal came through Yaya Toure after a great move. Then on 15 minutes Aguero converted a penalty. Tom Lees was adjudged to have pulled Aguero – a very harsh decision.
Lees had United’s best chance but just could not get the all-important touch needed when in a great position in the penalty box.
City controlled everything in midfield and after a foul just outside the box Ross McCormack had a free-kick saved just before the break, the first Leeds shot on target.
After the break Carlos Tevez scored following a clever move which triggered chants of “Warnock, time to go” and cheering for every decent Leeds pass, yes there were a few!
Aguero scored again on 73 minutes ending a good City move to seal the victory. The six thousand fans deserve a lot better. One shot on goal in the entire 90 minutes.
Man of the match: Jamie Ashdown.
Man City never needed to get out of second gear to beat a Leeds side with stagefright and lacking in confidence. The gulf in class was huge and a reminder of what used to be. A change is now overdue. Defeat to Blackpool midweek could have severe consequences.
Man of the match: Stephen Warnock.
United’s participation in this year’s FA Cup was ruthlessly ended by current Premier League champions Manchester City.
The hosts soon took the lead on five minutes and doubled their advantage 10 minutes later through a harshly-awarded penalty.
Two further second-half goals confirmed the considerable gulf in class between the sides.
Concentrating on the league will now probably mean trying to avoid relegation to League One this season and preparing for next season, more than likely with a new manager at the helm.
Man of the match: 6,000 loyal fans who deserve much better.
Men against boys was the only way to describe yesterday’s performance! City should have scored more than the four goals they did and with 6,000 fans making their opinions known towards manager Neil Warnock this week could be a testing one.
Man of the match: Jamie Ashdown.
Leeds meekly bowed out of this season’s FA Cup as they were outclassed by a far superior Man City side.
With the game over after 15 minutes it was left for the superb away following to make their own entertainment on a sobering day for the club who on this evidence are a million miles away from the top flight.
In what must surely be his last post-match interview, Warnock claimed he deserves a medal for the job he has done this season. If that is the case then the 6,100 who travelled to the Etihad deserve to see a side lifting trophies. They remain the only thing the club has to shout about.
Man of the match: The genius who started the chant “let’s pretend we scored a goal!”