Stuart Dallas refutes any suggestions of Leeds United 'dip in form'

STUART DALLAS has hit back at any suggestions that Leeds United are enduring a “dip in form” whilst readily admitting one point from United's last two games required his men to quickly “regroup and go again”.

Monday, 23rd December 2019, 6:00 am
RARE LOSS: Leeds United's Stuart Dallas, left, can only look on as Fulham's Josh Onomah blasts home his 69th-minute winner in Saturday's Championship clash at Craven Cottage. Picture by Tony Johnson.

Second-placed United headed for Saturday's Championship clash at Fulham seeking the perfect response to last weekend’s 3-3 draw at home to Cardiff City who ended a Whites run of seven consecutive league wins by fighting back from 3-0 down to claim an unlikely looking point.

Leeds, though, endured a nightmare start at Craven Cottage with Spanish playmaker Pablo Hernandez coming off injured in just the third minute, four minutes before referee Tim Robinson awarded the Cottagers the softest of penalties.

Centre-back Ben White was penalised for a slight brush of Bobby Reid’s back with his hands and the Championship’s top goalscorer Aleksandar Mitrovic converted the spot kick.

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Leeds hit back to level through Patrick Bamford nine minutes after the hour as the striker followed up on the rebound after substitute Eddie Nketiah’s shot was saved from a brilliant Gjanni Alioski through ball.

But Marcelo Bielsa’s men ultimately fell to a first defeat in 12 games with Fulham’s Josh Onomah slamming home a pile-driver of a shot in the 69th minute after United failed to clear a corner.

Leeds picked up 26 points from a possible 30 prior to last weekend's clash against Cardiff but one point out of a last possible six has seen United's cushion back to the teams chasing the automatic promotion places trimmed to eight points with Sheffield Wednesday third.

Dallas, though, said United remained in the same form with the Northern Ireland international left bemused by Robinson’s penalty decision but ruing another goal conceded from a corner.

“It’s not a dip in form,” said Dallas.

“We have come off the back of seven straight wins so I wouldn’t look at it as a dip in form.

“If people want to write those headlines they can but we are confident in ourselves.”

Leeds return to action on Boxing Day at home to fifth-placed Preston North end who like fourth-placed Fulham also sit nine points behind the Whites.

United will then visit Birmingham City on Sunday before the clash at leaders West Brom on New Year’s Day.

“The good thing about it is that we have got another game in three or four days time, another massive game at home to Preston,” said Dallas.

“They are obviously up there and we have a big couple of weeks coming up.

“There is no denying we are in a good position.

“This was a chance for us to continue our good run and stretch away from the chasing pack and unfortunately we couldn’t do that but we will regroup and go again.”