Leeds United 1 Sheffield Wednesday 2: Heckingbottom - bad decisions, not lack of effort cost us the game

HEAD COACH Paul Heckingbottom said Leeds United's 2-1 defeat at home to Sheffield Wednesday had nothing to do with a lack of effort with "bad decisions at bad moments" instead costing the Whites the game.

Saturday, 17th March 2018, 5:29 pm
Updated Saturday, 17th March 2018, 5:40 pm
Leeds United head coach Paul Heckingbottom in the snow during Saturday's 2-1 loss at home to Sheffield Wednesday. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

Leeds squandered decent chances in the first half with striker Caleb Ekuban missing a particularly glorious opportunity from a cleverly worked free-kick.

Atdhe Nuhiu then gave Wednesday a 71st-minute lead when netting the rebound after Adam Reach's header had hit the post and while Leeds equalised through substitute Jay-Roy Grot, Nuhiu then won the ball from Matthew Pennington to bag the Owls a winning goal in the 91st minute.

The defeat came four days after owner Andrea Radrizzani had openly criticised his squad's “commitment, passion and spirit” during a radio interview.

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Asked if he was surprised at his side's display as a reaction to Radrizzani's comments, Heckingbottom said: "I know for a fact, I will look back and there will be no lack of effort in there.

"It's nothing to do with that. It's bad decisions at bad moments that has cost the players today, definitely. It's nothing to do with effort.

"If you a say a winning mentality there's more to a winning mentality then just trying hard.

"Experience is a big one, big moments is a big one and just key decisions at those times."

Reflecting on the nature of the defeat, Heckingbottom admitted: "I'm disappointed. I sound like a broken record at the moment at the minute.

"In the last couple of games I should have been coming in and speaking to the players about how I like the bits that they have done well and why we have won the game.

"But instead I am not, I am going mad at reasons why we have lost the game and it's as simple as that.

"Both goals should have been stopped and that was the game, you have to be clinical at one end and take your chances at one end and you have got to be ruthless, tight and disciplined at the other end.

"The goals conceded are nothing to do with a lack of effort on the players' part or a lack of drive, it's poor decisions at the wrong time and that's what winning teams have - they are really resilient and really disciplined in their work and give nothing away and are really tight.

"And in today's game the two goals you would be disappointed seeing those goals at any level."