Thomas Christiansen held his hands up to a deserved defeat at Molineux but insisted the gulf between Leeds United and Wolverhampton Wanderers was not vast despite a 4-1 loss.
The impetus gained by Leeds during Sunday’s win over Middlesbrough was halted again tonight as a bad first half and a red card shown to Ronaldo Vieira in the second ended in the club’s joint heaviest defeat of the season.
United conceded twice in the first 26 minutes as Wolves showed the attacking flair which has taken the club to the top of the Championship and the prospect of a fightback raised by Gjanni Alioski’s finish after the interval was ended when Vieira received his second booking of the night on the hour.
Diogo Jota’s chipped finish and a penalty from substitute Helder Costa picked Leeds off in the closing stages.
Christiansen, whose side dropped back down to 10th in the Championship, predicted that Wolves would claim automatic promotion but claimed Leeds had not been excessively outclassed.
“They were a better side, no doubt,” he said.
“They are the first team in the league with a lot of quality. I believe they’re going to promoted directly.
“We faced the best team in the league and you saw how fast they moved the ball but I think there was not a big difference between us and them. We proved that in the second half when we came back with the early goal.
“We managed things well until the first goal but at 2-0 it was complicated.
“I believed before the game that we would make a good result but the red card cost us the possibility to come back. I’m happy with the attitude of my players.”
Vieira’s red card was his first of the career and a one-match ban will rule him out of Saturday’s Yorkshire derby at Barnsley.
Christiansen admitted he would take a portion of the blame for the dismissal, saying: “I think we were good at 2-1 and that came in a bad moment.
“Everyone has to learn from that. He does and I do because he made some fouls before so perhaps I should have changed him. I can take my responsibility also.”