Sheffield Wednesday 0
Leeds United 0
OK, so it was annoying we couldn’t get more than a point at Hillsborough today, especially since only Preston North End, of all the top ten sides, actually got a three point haul today. We might have guessed this result though had we studied the statistics beforehand. With only 17 goals in 14 games, Leeds have the joint lowest goals scored total in the top ten, while the Owls have scored only one more. On the other side of the coin, and the reason both sides are currently in the top three, is that Leeds have conceded fewer goals (8) than any other side in the Championship and Sheffield Wednesday have only conceded 10; the 2nd best defensive record.
So, two tight defences came up against each other and two misfiring forward lines joined the party; it was always going to be nil-nil wasn’t it? Well, it almost wasn’t of course, the Owls rattled the Leeds crossbar and then we breathed a sigh of relieve as the rebound thumped against the back of Kiko Casilla and then Gjanni Alioski rose at the back post to head the ball firmly against the post; not that he’d know much about it as it came off the back of his head! That was as close as either side came to snatching all three points but Kiko was the busier of the two keepers and that was a sign that Wednesday had the better of the half-chances created.
For Leeds it was another very similar performance as in recent weeks; the bulk of the possession, although not by as big a margin as usual, but few quality chances created and a continuing feeling that we lack a cutting edge at the moment. Bamford had a header well saved in the first half and I am nervous of getting into the debate as to whether he should’ve done better with it; for me it was a poor header coming off the top of his head and not the meaty bit at the front that John Charles always used to use! Eddie Nketiah showed us what he can do when he replaced Bamford at half time: one snap shot on the angle beaten away by the keeper and one moment of sheer class as he ghosted past a defender on the byline leaving his man prone on the turf wondering “How did he do that?” He also won a couple of useful free kicks in dangerous positions through his own brand of ball control. We can only wonder what the outcome of the game would have been had it been Nketiah on the end of that first half header….
Two points on the road this week and, as long as we follow that up by beating QPR on Saturday, then both will be seen as good points against decent sides, sides not as good as we are at our best, but decent sides none the less. Boy do we need Pablo back though; we are missing his guile and inspiration and there is currently far too much blood, sweat and tears and not enough sparkle on display from the Mighty Whites.
Sheff Weds Leeds Utd
Possession 43% 57%
Shots 11 9
On Target 4 3
Corners 5 4
Fouls Committed 16 9