The YEP jury have their say on Leeds United’s 2-1 against Yeovil Town at Huish Park.
No sleep on Friday night and an early start on Saturday morning was my preparation for a 4am set-off for the trip to Yeovil Town, which by full time proved totally worth it.
Brian McDermott named an unchanged side following last weekend’s Yorkshire derby victory over Huddersfield Town. There was a return to the matchday squad for United striker Matt Smith after serving his three-match suspension.
Given the appalling weather conditions in the south west, we must thank the Glovers groundstaff that this game went ahead. The strong wind would have a huge say in the outcome and Yeovil, who were kicking with the wind in the first half, came roaring out of the blocks and it would be damage limitation as far as Leeds were concerned.
The conditions at Huish Park were affecting both sides but Yeovil broke the deadlock on 32 minutes. The goal came from a corner and it was Ishmael Miller who rose highest to power a header past Paddy Kenny.
Then just before half-time Yeovil had the opportunity to make it 2-0 when Sam Byram brought down Kevin Dawson in the box.
Fortunately for us it proved to be a massive let off as Miller skied the penalty into the away end who did an excellent job of putting the big man off.
This proved to be the turning point in the match and I was quite happy going into half-time 1-0 down as I knew in the second half we had the wind to our advantage.
Smith replaced Alex Mowatt at half-time and within 40 seconds Ross McCormack picked up the ball on the edge of the penalty area and placed a stunning strike into the top corner.
After equalising, Rodolph Austin and Cameron Stewart had good chances to score but on the hour mark the turn-around was complete.
Stephen Warnock used the conditions to his advantage as he struck a 35-yard free-kick goalwards and although it was clearly wind assisted, Stech aimlessly wandered off his line before the ball dropped over his head and into the net.
Jimmy Kebe and McCormack had good chances to put the result beyond doubt but the 2-1 scoreline was enough for us to claim back-to-back wins for the first time since mid-November. It was not pretty but the three points is what matters and now we have a difficult trip to Brighton and Hove Albion tomorrow night.
Win this and we are right back in the mix but whatever happens it’s nice to be talking football again.
Man of the match: Ross McCormack...and the wind.
After Mr Cellino signed on the dotted line to become the new owner of Leeds United – if granted Football League approval – Leeds recorded back-to-back wins after another second-half comeback at Yeovil.
The conditions were tough on both sides but Yeovil with the wind after their backs settled well and it was no surprise that they took the lead, Miller heading the home side ahead from a corner. Things could have got worse for Leeds when Sam Byram brought down Grant in the penalty area, incredibly Miller spurned the chance by hitting the ball against the bar and out of the ground.
Matt Smith was introduced for Alex Mowatt after the break and within a minute of the restart Ross McCormack curled in a beautiful shot to level the scores. On 61 minutes Leeds were awarded a free-kick just inside the Yeovil half and incredibly Stephen Warnock’s effort flew over everybody’s head and into the net.
With less than 20 minutes to play a good move including Byram ended with McCormack lifting the ball over the bar. Leeds were then denied a clear penalty when Rodolph Austin’s strike from outside the area clearly stuck a Yeovil defender’s arm as the ball deflected over. McCormack was then denied by a splendid save by Marek Stech when put through by Smith.
This was a good win and definitely a game of two wind -assisted halves.
Man of the match: Ross McCormack.
A thoroughly deserved win in shocking conditions.
I thought Matt Smith changed the game as Yeovil had something different to think about and allowed Ross McCormack a bit more freedom.I also thought Jason Pearce was immense.
Man of the match: Jason Pearce.
The winds of change are blowing through Elland Road, but on Saturday it was the gale that roared through Huish Park which allowed Leeds United to make it two wins on the bounce.
Leeds played into the wind in the first half and fell behind. Once again the game’s turning point came just on half-time, with Ishmael Miller’s penalty miss giving United an opportunity to turn the game around.
Leeds took just under a minute to utilise the conditions with Ross McCormack spectacularly equalising. The winner came in farcical fashion with Stephen Warnock’s high looping free-kick, catching the perfect gust to float into the net.
Man of the match: Hurricane Huish.
After a week of lots of hot air it was United who adapted best to the blustery conditions at Huish Park on Saturday lunchtime.
At the end of a surreal week at Elland Road this was a totally apt way to register another three points.
Man of the match: Paddy Kenny.
It was fitting that Leeds ended one of the craziest weeks in their history by taking home three points from Yeovil Town thanks to a bizarre goal.
It seems traditional to fall behind in every game these days and Leeds did just that mid-way into the first half.
Had Ishmael Miller not crashed his penalty against the top of the crossbar then Yeovil would have had a two-goal lead to defend as they headed out to battle the elements in the second half. Leeds ultimately ran out relatively comfortable winners and should have had a third goal when Jimmy Kebe blazed over the bar with just the keeper to beat.
Man of the match: Ross McCormack.