THOMAS CHRISTIANSEN defended his side’s performance and refused to say whether Leeds United would be active in the January transfer market after a spate of missed chances allowed Nottingham Forest to claim a point at Elland Road.
Leeds were denied by the crossbar and the reactions of Forest goalkeeper Jordan Smith as the clubs’ New Year’s Day meeting in Yorkshire ended in a goalless draw.
Kemar Roofe struck the frame of Forest’s goal early in the second half and Smith intervened to stop Pablo Hernandez snatching a late win, forcing Leeds to take a point two days on from a frustrating loss at bottom-of-the-table Birmingham City.
Christiansen was critical of United’s performance at St Andrews but insisted there was “not much I can complain about” after yesterday’s clash with a managerless Forest team.
Leeds dropped to sixth in the Championship table, behind Aston Villa who beat Bristol City last night, but the January transfer window is open and Christiansen said he planned to meet with United’s board for further discussions about recruitment this month.
The club are not expected to make substantial additions to their squad having seen Christiansen’s existing group of players force their way into contention for promotion in the first half of the season.
Leeds are preparing to tie up a £500,000 deal for Gamba Osaka midfielder Yosuke Ideguchi but the Japan international is unlikely to receive a work permit immediately and will be lined up for a half-season loan abroad.
Asked about how much business he felt was necessary to keep Leeds in the running, Christiansen said: “First we’re going to speak about that, with the board. Afterwards we will take decisions.”
Leeds are within six points of second place despite their past two results but only a point ahead of Sheffield United in seventh. Christiansen was aggrieved by yesterday’s goalless result after a starring performance from Samuel Saiz, including a dancing run to set up Roofe’s chance, created a string of opportunities in the second half.
The performance I liked a lot but it was still not enough. I don’t like to look at the other teams and what they did, I want to look at my team and we lost two points but there’s not much I can complain about.Leeds United head coach, Thomas Christiansen
“I believe that we deserved to take the three points,” Christiansen said. “We created big, very big, opportunities.
“We didn’t give them opportunities to come into the game or have chances. But this is football. We created the opportunities, deserved to win and did almost everything perfectly but then we had a game like we had against Hull (last month). We didn’t deserve to win that but we scored and took the points.
“The performance I liked a lot but it was still not enough. I don’t like to look at the other teams and what they did to maintain our position. I want to look at my team and we lost two points but there’s not much I can complain about – just the last pass or the last shot.”
United have a two-week break from the Championship before their next league game away at Ipswich Town on January 13 and will travel to League Two side Newport County in the FA Cup’s third round on Sunday.
Christiansen denied that fatigue had affected Leeds in the past two matches but said: “It’s been tough with four games in eight, nine games so the players need to recover now.”
The Leeds boss, meanwhile, confirmed that out-of-favour left-back Cameron Borthwick-Jackson would start against Newport having failed to feature significantly since joining on a season-long loan from Manchester United in August.
Borthwick-Jackson’s lack of appearance raised the possibility of Leeds moving to cancel his loan this month, as Wolverhampton Wanderers did with the left-back last January, but asked if Borthwick-Jackson might return to Old Trafford, Christiansen said: “What I know is that he will play the next game.”