Garry Monk was delighted to secure his first league win as Leeds United boss with a 2-0 victory at Sheffield Wednesday.
Both sides created chances in the first half, most notably two one-on-ones in quick succession for Wednesday forward Fernando Forestieri. The frontman was left wanting for goals despite a good performance after controversy surrounding transfer speculation last week.
Three of Monk’s 10 summer signings combined 20 minutes into the second half as Hadi Sacko’s interplay with Luke Ayling preceded a cross to new striker Marcus Antonsson, who nodded into an empty net for the game’s first goal.
As Wednesday instinctively pushed forward, gaps were left in behind for another new signing, ex-Oxford forward Kemar Roofe, to play a low cross into Chris Wood who slotted in his second goal in as many games to seal the win five minutes from time.
Monk said: “We had a game plan today and the players followed it pretty much to the letter. This was an important win for the players in terms of their progression. We got three points from two great goals and an excellent performance.
“We’re still not the team we want to be, but this was a game which showed a real improvement which is important for the development of our young players.
“We need those little improvements day by day and game by game to get us where we want to be. Everyone knows how tough this league is and there will be setbacks, but it’s our level of consistency which will be important.
“We were the better team today. It was an excellent atmosphere and there were many battles in midfield which are always brought about by derby days. We were really focussed on our job today and it was an excellent win.”
Wednesday have now lost two league games in a row after beating Aston Villa and drawing at Norwich, both Premier League sides last term.
Coach Carlos Carvalhal said: “This is a disappointing result after a good start to the season with the performances against Aston Villa and Norwich. The game was very physical today and although we ran a lot, we didn’t necessarily run properly.
“The balance of the squad at the minute is not 100%, some players are fitter than others after pre-season, but this cannot be an excuse.
“We had strong momentum going into the Burton game (in midweek) and we were playing good football, but I think that loss made our confidence and our energy suffer.
“We wanted the same performance today as we had against Villa and Norwich but it wasn’t the case.
“It was important to score the first goal today and although we made a number of chances in the first half we didn’t do that. We responded well after conceding and created three or four chances, but fell victim to the counter-attack from Leeds.”
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