U23s Report: Blackburn Rovers 4-0 Leeds United

Whites defeated away from home.


Premier League 2

Blackburn Rovers 4 (Vale 2’, 40’, Harlock 31’, McBride 49’)

Leeds United 0

Rovers: Stergiakis, Brown, Gent, Wharton (Leonard 66’), Phillips (c), Pratt, McBride, Harlock, Vale, Dack (Durrant 45’), Chapman. Subs not used: Dowling, Brennan, Batty.

Leeds: Klaesson (GK), McKinstry, Hjelde, Kenneh, Mullen (Gray 45’), Moore, Miller (McGurk 72’), Jenkins, Dean (Joseph 79’), Bate, McCarron. Subs not used: Van den Heuvel (GK).

Venue: Leyland County Ground

Referee: Paul Marsden

Booked: Brown (Rovers) Miller, Hjelde (Leeds)

Leeds United Under-23s endured a tough night away at Blackburn Rovers in Premier League 2, going down to a comprehensive four-goal defeat.

The Whites into the match with renewed confidence following two momentum building victories, but found themselves three goals down before the break, then four down a short way into the second half.

The first chance of the game resulted in a goal for the home side. Rovers forward Jack Vale found space in the area and struck a low, left-footed effort beyond Kristoffer Klaesson into the bottom corner with two minutes on the clock.

Blackburn kept up the pressure and Connor McBride went close to making it two when presented with a big chance in front of goal. Leeds looked to respond and went close, with Jack Jenkins breaking forward and having his shot blocked.

With 15 minutes to go until half-time, Rovers doubled their advantage. Another quick break saw the hosts play a clever exchange around the box, setting Jared Harlock free to finish well and make it two for his side.

With five minutes to go until the interval, two became three, and in doing so all but secured the points for Mike Sheron’s team. Again it was Vale who found the net, tapping in at close range from more good work down the wing.

HALF TIME: Blackburn Rovers 3-0 Leeds United

Both teams made changes at the interval. The hosts replaced the experienced Bradley Dack with Samuel Durrant, whilst Leeds brought off Jeremiah Mullen, bringing on Archie Gray.

Blackburn began on the front foot again and followed up their quick start and goal in the first half, with one at the beginning of the second.

Harry Chapman created space down the wing and chipped the ball into the box, where McBride was accurately positioned to head home his first of the game and the fourth for his side.

Leeds did continue to push forward and attempt to reduce the deficit, but Rovers were standing strong with captain Ashley Phillips leading the backline well. Amari Miller came closest to getting on back, as his deflected effort was superbly tipped onto the crossbar by Atonis Stergiakis at full-stretch.

Max Dean then had two further attempts on goal, one over and one which brought another good stop from the Rovers ‘keeper, before he was then brought off for Mateo Joseph to make his Whites debut.

The game was brought to a close at the Leyland County Ground, securing Blackburn three important points and moving them up a place in the table, above Derby. Leeds stay a place and a point above of their opponents as the battle down the bottom continues.

FULL TIME: Blackburn Rovers 4-0 Leeds United

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