Picture special: Leeds United 2 Atalanta 1 - Whites raise the Roofe against Italians

Kemar Roofe is Congratulated by Sol Bamba and Kyle Bartley after scoring the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Kemar Roofe is Congratulated by Sol Bamba and Kyle Bartley after scoring the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

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LEEDS United signed off their pre-season with a gutsy 2-1 victory against Italian Serie A side Atalanta at Elland Road thanks to a second-half winner from Kemar Roofe.

Chris Wood gave United a 25th-minute lead with a bizarrely awarded penalty but a dangerous Atalanta side levelled just six minutes later through Marco D’Alessandro.

Kemar Roofe is Congratulated by Sol Bamba and Kyle Bartley after scoring the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Kemar Roofe is Congratulated by Sol Bamba and Kyle Bartley after scoring the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

But summer signing Roofe put United back in front after the break when flicking home a Kalvin Phillips corner with 22 minutes left.

Whites head coach Garry Monk named 13 substitutes and gave a start to Italian trialist Gabi Perico at right back.

Charlie Taylor started at left back with Sol Bamba captaining the side and partnering Kyle Bartley at centre-back, ahead of Rob Green in goal.

Stuart Dallas made his first start of pre-season on the left wing, with Roofe on the opposite flank and Wood up top as centre forward.

Kemar Roofe scores the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Kemar Roofe scores the winning goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Alex Mowatt lined up just behind the front three in centre-midfield, ahead of Toumani Diagouraga and Ronaldo Viera as holding midfielders.

Liam Cooper missed out with his calf injury with Gaetano Beardi also not risked after his leg injury but named on the bench.

And after a series of half chances for both sides, Wood gave United a 25th-minute lead with a penalty awarded for handball.

A Dallas free-kick from the centre circle was floated into the area and Wood thumped home the loose ball past Davide Bassi in goal.

Chris Wood scores from the spot. Picture by Simon Hulme

Chris Wood scores from the spot. Picture by Simon Hulme

However, referee Robert Madley blew his whistle for what appeared to be an Atalanta free-kick, only to then point to the penalty spot for handball.

Wood stepped up to take the spot kick and thumped the ball past Bassi into the bottom right corner.

United’s lead lasted only six minutes as the Italian side hit back through a clinical counter attack finished by the excellent Marco D’Allesandro.

Vieira, who had a fine first half otherwise, was dispossessed in midfield, allowing Franck Kessie to gallop at United’s back four.

Gary Monk talks to Alex Mowatt.  Picture by Simon Hulme

Gary Monk talks to Alex Mowatt. Picture by Simon Hulme

Kessie then played in D’Allesandro down the right hand side and the Atalanta forward rifled a powerful drive past Green into the bottom left corner.

The Italian side began to dominate and their star player Alejandro Gomez was only denied six minutes later by a brilliant goalline clearance from Bamba.

Gomez stuck out an outstretched leg to prod a long, looping ball past Green but Bamba was in the right place at the right time to keep the scores level.

Trialist Perico was then booked for scything down Gomez in midfield and Bamba then put a looping effort into the top tier of the south stand from a 45th-minute corner.

And Atalanta then went agonisingly close to making it 2-1 in first-half injury time when Gomez curled an effort just wide of Green’s left hand post.

Atalanta then began the second half in the same fashion as they ended the first with Andrea Conti rifling a 30-yard thunderbolt just over and wide.

Chris Wood after scoring his goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Chris Wood after scoring his goal. Picture by Simon Hulme

Cristian Ramondi then fired wide from range as the Italian’s continued to press but it was United who bagged the game’s third goal after 68 minutes.

Substitute Hadi Sacko’s fine right flank delivery was headed behind for a Whites corner which was swung in low by another Whites sub in Phillips.

There appeared little danger but Roofe was on hand to nip in before ‘keeper Bassi and flick the ball home infront of a delighted Kop.

United were heading for victory but Green was then forced to produce a stunning save to tip a curling effort from Jasmin Kurtic around the post.

D’Alessandro then thumped home an effort from inside the area but his effort was greeted by an offside flag amid jeers from Elland Road as the contest entered its final 15 minutes.

United were then denied a third goal when substitute Marcus Antonnson’s effort at the back post was ruled offside.

Atalanta looked to be running out of steam but right at the death Green produced a stunning save from point blank range to deny Guido Marilungo.

Leeds United: Green, Perico (Coyle 45), Bartley, Bamba, Taylor, Diagouraga (Grimes 62), Vieira (Botaka 80), Mowatt (Phillips 62), Dallas (Sacko 45), Roofe (Murphy 80), Wood (Antonsson 71). Subs: Silvestri, Turnbull, Berardi, P McKay, Denton, Doukara.

Atalanta: Bassi; Masiello, Toloi, Raimondi; Conti, Kessie, Kurtic, Spinazzola; D’alessandro, Paloschi, Gomez. Subs: Stendardo, Gagliardini, Migliaccio, Freuler, Caldara, Petagna, Mazzini, Djimsiti, Marilungo, Drame’, Carmona, Drame’.

Referee: Robert Madley.

Kemar Roofe scores foer Leeds United.

Kemar Roofe scores foer Leeds United.

Chris Wood has an injury scare.

Chris Wood has an injury scare.

Stuart Dallas is briefed by Garry Monk

Stuart Dallas is briefed by Garry Monk

Chris Wood. Picture: Bruce Rollinson

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