Leeds United 1 Bolton Wanderers 0: YEP jury verdict

JOY: Stephen Warnock celebrates his winner with Scott Wootton.
JOY: Stephen Warnock celebrates his winner with Scott Wootton.
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The YEP jury give their verdict on Leeds United’s 1-0 win against Bolton at Elland Road.

Name: Gary Newbould

Age: 43

United fan for: 43 years

Lives: York

After a turbulent week that saw a cup exit at Valley Parade, followed by the departure of coach David Hockaday, United registered a very timely and welcome three points at Elland Road on Saturday afternoon.

Caretaker boss Neil Redfearn certainly shuffled the pack and it should have been no surprise to anyone amongst the 21,901 crowd that youth featured prominently in the academy manager’s squad, with both Lewis Cook and Alex Mowatt selected to start and Charlie Dawson on the bench. The game also saw debuts for new signings Casper Sloth and Mirko Antenucci as the Whites started the game with four players from Italy.

United started the game well and seemed to be free of the shackles of previous weeks with Lewis Cook looking particularly impressive in midfield and belying his mere 17 years of age.

Following a Bolton shot which keeper Silvestri turned brilliantly onto the bar, a sweeping move along the left created an opportunity for Stephen Warnock on 17 minutes. The full back’s cross-cum-shot deflected into the net to send the loyal hordes into raptures.

The half was played out with several chances for both sides, including a number of excellent saves from United’s custodian Silvestri to ensure that the home side retained the ascendancy as half time arrived.

The second period saw United come under sustained pressure from the visitors who belied their lowly position with several flowing attacking moves that must have created increased optimism for their manager and former United player Dougie Freedman.

United’s scorer Warnock suffered a leg injury and was replaced by academy graduate Charlie Taylor just before the hour mark.

On 78 minutes, Zan Benedicic replaced the excellent Casper Sloth whilst former United star Jermaine Beckford entered the fray for the visitors and was duly afforded a fully deserved hero’s reception (as was Andrew Hughes, one of the Trotters’ substitutes, whilst warming up, again thoroughly deserved).

It was that man Beckford who almost rescued a point for the visitors with a close range header, however United’s stopper Silvestri made a miraculous double save to ensure that the president and his recent additions enjoyed the perfect and beautiful Italian score of 1-0 for the second time this season.

The president has made his decision and full marks to him for recognising his mistake, acting on it and continuing to invest. Next comes the difficult decision of who to appoint next.

My application is with you Mr President!

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.

Name: Keith Ingham

Age: 54

United fan for: 41 years

Lives: Keighley

THIS was just the lift the whole club needed.

It was a freeflowing Leeds that went straight for Bolton but the visitors had the first goal-bound effort, Silvestri pulling off the first of numerous saves keeping a Mason effort out. On 17 minutes, Leeds were ahead, Billy Sharp playing in Stephen Warnock and the full-back beating Bogdan with a splendid strike. The midfield quartet of Mowatt, Cook, Sloth and Bianchi were in everything that Leeds did well.

In an open second period, both sides continued to create chances with Bolton generally having the better ones, Spearing testing Silvestri again who was alert to Mason trying to force home the rebound.

The impressive Cook found Sharp but the United marksman only found Bogdan’s grateful arms. Jermaine Beckford received a hero’s welcome and was soon in action, hitting a shot wide. Silvestri capped a great display by keeping out Beckford and Chung-Yong with a brilliant double save in injury time.

Leeds showed mettle and rode their luck to keep out the visitors. But with the average age of the team under 25 it is hopeful that whoever the new coach is, he continues to give the youngsters ignored by Hockaday a run in the team. If you’re good enough you’re old enough. Well done Neil and the players.

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.

Name: James Harrison

Age: 18

United fan for: 10 years

Lives: Drighlington

I am much happier this week! It was a much-needed win on Saturday in front of 21,000 at Elland Road.

I thought we played really well in the first half, keeping the ball good but still not causing many problems up top. In the second half, we just couldn’t get the ball, we couldn’t string three passes together and that is why we were under so much pressure.

Lewis Cook was outstanding. At only 17 years of age he looks like he could go on and play at the highest level possible.

The win has shed a lot of optimism around the place and I’m gutted there is now an international break.

Man of the match: Lewis Cook.

Name: Matthew Evans

Age: 29

United fan for: 22 years

Lives: Pudsey

It was brave of Neil Redfearn to shake up the United midfield but it turned out to be a great decision. Mowatt, Cook and Sloth looked excellent alongside Bianchi and all four midfielders being so comfortable on the ball was key.

It wasn’t an entirely convincing performance but it was a significant improvement on what has gone before. United rode their luck at times but took the points thanks to Stephen Warnock’s goal, some solid defending and a fantastic show by Marco Silvestri. We can now enjoy a fortnight break on the back of a much needed win.

We just need to appoint the right manager.

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.

Name: Jonathan Ford

Age: 24

United fan for: 20 years

Lives: Beeston

Neil Redfearn knows a good youngster when he sees one, and the heart of our midfield were our own products of the academy and they delivered! We were much better and more balanced with Sloth outstanding and Silvestri having the game of his life!

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.

Name: Stephen Clark

Age: 42

United fan for: 26 years

Lives: Shipley

The feel-good factor returned to Elland Road as an injection of youth into the Leeds line-up brought about a much needed win for the Whites. The next appointment of coach is a crucial one. Cellino could not have got it more wrong than Hockaday.

Man of the match: Marco Silvestri.

Samuel Saiz is facing time on the sidelines after straining his hamstring.

Leeds United playmaker Samuel Saiz facing race to be fit for Bolton clash