'What a result' - Jesse Marsch on Leeds United win, Raul Jimenez red card and Covid-19 situation

Jesse Marsch says all the credit for Leeds United's sensational 3-2 win at Wolves should go to the players for the character they showed.

By Graham Smyth
Friday, 18th March 2022, 11:45 pm
Updated Friday, 18th March 2022, 11:46 pm

At half-time Marsch's Whites, who lost Patrick Bamford, Diego Llorente and Mateusz Klich to injury in the first half, were staring down the barrel of a defeat. Wolves were 2-0 up and comfortably the better side, having missed chances to put the game to bed.

But Raul Jimenez' red card, for a second yellow, early in the second half changed the game and goals from Jack Harrison, Rodrigo and Luke Ayling gave Marsch a second successive win.

The second half, even before the sending off, was all about belief according to the American.

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"The best part of this one was…. talking at half-time not about tactics but about not feeling sorry for ourselves," he said.

"After three injuries and a late goal, to be thinking it's not our day and what will we do now? I encouraged them to believe that a good start to the half and a goal will change things. Then we got a boost from the red card, which was deserved. We have a real quality of men. No subs left, four injuries, they were gutsy, they dug in and pushed the game, stayed tough. Young guys coming on and delivering performances like that says a lot about the character of the men that we have, they deserve credit. That’s the identity of Leeds United - gritty, hard, never saying die, giving everything you can to the match. These men do that in a big way. What a result."

Ayling's stoppage time winner prompted wild scenes in the Leeds technical area, with substitutes sprinting across the pitch to join the celebrations in front of the away fans on the far side. The comeback merited the reaction, said Marsch.

"I told them it was not just one of the best results of my career but that I've seen in the game," he said.

HUGE WIN - Leeds United boss Jesse Marsch said his players deserved all the credit for showing the necessary heart to come back from 2-0 down to beat 10-man Wolves 3-2. Pic: Bruce Rollinson

"Two in a row. All about the character and hearts of our men. They deserve all the credit. They went on the pitch and went for it and believed in themselves. Moment after moment after moment, they pushed the game. We will continue to push that mindset and be clearer about how we play football.

"Everton won last night and I didn't care. All I want to focus on is us. To stay true and calm to our process, to push ourselves every day, growing, finding a way to control what we can. We have the quality of people and players to control destiny - not just to survive but thrive in this situation. That’s the goal."

Marsch, who said Stuart Dallas was suffering after being hit with a challenge Leeds felt was red-card worthy from Moutinho, has given his players tomorrow off due not only to the nature of the win but the Covid-19 situation with Raphinha. The Brazilian winger missed the game having tested positive.

"In the euphoria of the game, I gave them tomorrow off then 10 minutes later I thought why did I do that?" he joked.

"With the Covid situation it might be best for us not to be around each other. Mentally and physically, for the last three or four months it's been a grind for our group so I think they deserve a little time off to enjoy their families."