Leeds United 2 Bristol City 0 - the final word: Youngsters step up, Saiz stakes claim, Blackman tribute and the Roofe is on fire

Have your say

Leeds United ran out 2-0 winners over Bristol City on Saturday afternoon in the Championship at Elland Road - but what were the key talking points? Joe Urquhart has the final word.

Will Huffer and Aapo Halme make the leap

Leeds United's Kemar Roofe (R) and Kalvin Phillips celebrate against Bristol City at Elland Road.

Leeds United's Kemar Roofe (R) and Kalvin Phillips celebrate against Bristol City at Elland Road.

Circumstances dictated that Marcelo Bielsa was forced into delving into Leeds United's Under-23s squad for the visit of Bristol City on Saturday.

Will Huffer, an England Under-20 international, and Aapo Halme, a 20-year-old Finnish defender who arrived at the club in January, were forced into action amid the Whites injury crisis at Elland Road.

Neither had a senior appearance for the Whites to their name but the duo proved ready to make the leap into life in the Championship despite a lacklustre showing from Lee Johnson's side.

Huffer proved a calm head following an expected nervy start and was relatively untested by the Robins who really should have put more pressure on the youngster with a shoot on sight policy.

Halme, who has been hit by a number of injuries since his arrival, also provided a strong presence in the centre of defence alongside Kalvin Phillips and Liam Cooper.

A number of strong headers and relative calm on the ball in United's style of play saw him settle quickly with City only exposing him on one occasion as Andreas Weimann burst onto a ball over the top midway through the opening half.

The pair can take a lot of confidence from their first steps into senior action in LS11 but there may be no time for celebrations as Marcelo Bielsa admitted he was being made to sweat over the returns of Pontus Jansson and Bailey Peacock-Farrell ahead of Tuesday's visit of Reading to West Yorkshire.

Kemar Roofe is on fire

Eight goals in 984 minutes this season across 12 Championship appearances suggest Kemar Roofe has very much found his shooting boots in front of goal.

The 25-year-old appears to have found that handy knack all good strikers possession of being in the right place at the right time. Roofe's opener against Bristol City was testament to that as he prodded home a wayward Pablo Hernandez shot past Niki Maenpaa in the visiting goal from close-range.

Roofe's goals have been a key part of United's early season success and with Leeds expecting to open contract talks with him soon the strikers efforts will continue to emphasise his importance to Marcelo Bielsa's system.

Should Samuel Saiz start against Reading?

The million dollar question.

“I haven't thought about the starting XI for Tuesday," Bielsa said when quizzed over whether Samuel Saiz could start against Reading on Tuesday evening.

The Spaniard gave the Argentine boss another timely reminder of his quality as he stepped off the bench to lift a lovely ball into the area for Pablo Hernandez to nod home to secure all three points for Leeds.

Saiz' form in recent months has dipped and Sunday marks a year since he last scored a goal for United in league action.

His reintroduction to the starting XI for the visit of the Royals might be just the trick to hand Leeds their cutting edge back that was lacking against City for an hour on Saturday and could well be the catalyst for the 27-year-old to smack the reset button on what has been an up and down year in a United shirt since his goal at Oakwell a year ago.

Jamal Blackman tribute

"Big man was with us today," club captain Liam Cooper posted on twitter following the result.

If anything the display shows a sign of unity in the Whites squad and that togetherness is going to be crucial in the coming weeks and months.

Leeds have been hit by a number of injuries and in true style it has been very much the attitude of 'next man up' at Thorp Arch.

Blackman was due to be handed his first league start for the club against City before fate intervened with a broken tibia which ended his season-long loan from Chelsea six months early.

Cooper has been exemplary in leading from the front this season as skipper with tributes for young Whites fan Toby Nye, who is battling stage 4 Neuroblastoma, and now fellow team-mate Blackman.