Leeds United v Swansea City 31st August 2019 at Elland Road

After another stressful morning I could have well done without, it meant we didn’t get to Elland Road until late. As soon as my granddaughter Laura was dropped off, along with my daughter Danielle we headed straight into the ground as it was too late to go to the Peacock. As we were walking along Lowfields Road this man passed us, pointed to me and said you see that lady, she was in Take Us Home. As we went to go in the turnstiles we bumped into another of the documentary fans so had a quick chat with Zoe and her friend Bethany who I met at the Premiere Event in the Trinity Centre. After a quick visit to the Kop bar Laura and I went to the front of the Kop to see the team training. It was nice to see Martin Hywood (who has done a lot of fund raising for Muscular Dystrophy) together with his family so managed a quick chat before Trampas shouted me. As usual I had taken photos of some of the fans I’d chatted with before the game. I also took some of the team coming out before heading to my seat.

The team: Casilla, Cooper (back from injury), Dallas, Alioski, Hernandez, Phillips, Klich, Forshaw, White, Bamford and Harrison. Subs: Nketiah for Bamford (61), Costa for Klich (71) and Douglas for Alioski (83). Leeds lost the game 1-0 with a goal scored by Swansea in the 90th minute. Attendance was 34,935 with 1,418 Swansea fans.

Leeds could have taken an early lead when a Swansea player nearly scored an own goal intercepting a cross. Luckily for them their keeper managed to get back in time to stop the ball crossing the line. Alioski’s shot went over the bar and with his next one the keeper made a good save. I said, third time lucky? Unfortunately that chance didn’t happen. The referee was winding the Leeds crowd up as Swansea went down after every challenge gaining a free kick. Admittedly some should have been given but others were just soft decisions. After some great play from Harrison the ball came to Bamford in the middle of the area but he was unable to get any power on the ball as their keeper gathered it up easily. That was a good chance as he was in a good position and it was a shame he couldn’t just hammer it into the net. Dallas impressed me in the early stages and although Bamford had been unlucky with a couple of chances, he was putting a lot of effort in on the pitch.

Despite Swansea getting lots of free kicks, we limited them to actual chances but from a free-kick around the half hour mark they hit the side netting. They had another good chance just before half-time before Leeds were unlucky not to take the lead when Cooper’s header bounced back off the crossbar. The first-half had gone past quite quickly as the teams went in level at the break.

The game had already kicked off as we came back to our seats with Swansea on the attack in front of the South Stand. Leeds continued to attack as Hernandez brought a save out of their keeper. Phillips was hurt after he landed heavily on his back after a foul. Although he kept going, he was limping for a while before eventually going down and needing treatment. He did carry on and played the rest of the game although not being 100%. We were getting into the penalty area and Harrison brought a save out of their keeper before Costa did some neat footwork around their player on the left and from his cross Hernandez’s shot went over the bar. Leeds were having lots of possession and I hadn’t felt worried about Swansea at that moment in time. With ten minutes to go Swansea had an attack but the header went over the bar. With another Leeds attack Dallas’s cross beat the keeper but Nketiah’s header at the far post went into the side netting. As it looked like the game was heading for a draw, Swansea were the ones who got the winner in the final minute of normal time when Leeds failed to clear the ball in the penalty area. With that Leeds fans in the East and West stands started streaming for the exits which surprised me. There was still time left to salvage something from the game but maybe they knew something that I didn’t? It was one of those games where we dominated possession again, but couldn’t get the ball into the net which meant we rued those chances we did have. This was our first defeat in the Championship this season and meant Swansea took our place at the top of the league as Leeds slipped to third place. Leeds didn’t deserve to lose but Swansea took their chance to get the points.

With the international break ahead of us once more our next game is away at Barnsley with a 12.30pm kick-off. See you then, LUFC – Marching on Together!

Author of the following books:

  • Follow Me and Leeds United
  • Once a Leeds fan, Always a Leeds fan
  • Co-author with Andrew Dalton of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Leeds United, Leeds United in the 1980s
  • The Sleeping Giant Awakens, Leeds United 2016-17
  • Back to Reality, Leeds United 2017-18
  • Out soon: Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United

 Website: www.followmeandleedsunited.co.uk Twitter: @FollowMeAndLUFC Facebook: Follow Me and Leeds United: Instagram: Heidi Haigh – lufcheidi @followmeandleedsunited

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