Cardiff City 0 Leeds United 2: Victory is ‘unbelievable’ boost says Hernandez

Pablo Hernandez celebrates his goal.
Pablo Hernandez celebrates his goal.
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Pablo Hernandez welcomed an “unbelievable” boost in confidence but warned Leeds United not to get ahead of themselves after Saturday’s win at Cardiff City rounded off a positive week.

Leeds put a bad spell of form comprehensively behind them by following up Tuesday’s victory over bottom-of-the-league Blackburn Rovers with a 2-0 win at a venue wich was once an unhappy hunting ground.

United won away at Cardiff for the first time in 32 years last season and second-half goals from Chris Wood and Pablo Hernandez sent them home from Wales with three more points on Saturday.

The result also secured back-to-back league wins for the first time this term and further dampened speculation that head coach Garry Monk was in danger of losing his job after a poor first month of the season.

Hernandez was one of several players who struggled to make a serious impact in August but the Spaniard and former Swansea City midfielder rounded off his most impressive performance to date with a beautiful curling finish on 82 minutes.

“It’s always good for my confidence when I score and it’s good for my confidence in the future but more important is the three points,” Hernandez said. “It was very important for us to win two games in a week because we haven’t started the season very well. Now with these two wins I think the team can go up in confidence and keep more calm.

“For the confidence of the team it’s unbelievable these two wins.”

Leeds began last week inside the Championship’s relegation places but successive victories moved them up to 15th place. The result, meanwhile, sent struggling Cardiff down to the foot of the table.

Hernandez said: “You win one game and you go up three or four positions. But if you lose one game you go four or five positions down.

“It’s too early (to make predictions) and the key now is to only think about the next game and to keep this performance going. With this performance the team can win a lot more games.”

Monk changed tact ahead of last week’s win over Blackburn, re-establishing his preferred 4-2-3-1 system and playing Hernandez in the number 10 role which the 31-year-old was lined up for when he moved to Leeds from Qatar.

The recall of Wood up front also paid off as the striker converted his fifth goal of the season from the penalty spot on 62 minutes following a foul by Cardiff’s Matthew Connolly on Pontus Jansson.

Hernandez has been used by Monk as both a central midfielder and a winger this season but Hernandez said the number 10 role was most suited to his game.

“I can play on the wings,” Hernandez said, “but for me this is the best position in which I can help the team to win matches.

“In this position I’m more free and I can take the ball between the lines. In the last two games the team altogether have worked nicely.”