U21 Report: Leeds United 3-0 Derby County
An excellent three points for the Whites!
Premier League 2
Leeds United 3 (Greenwood 15’, Snowdon 26’, Perkins 81’)
Derby County 0
Leeds: Christy (GK), Monteiro (Debayo 86’), Ferguson, Mullen, Moore, Gyabi, Allen (Crew 68’), Greenwood, Joseph (C), Perkins, Snowdon (Gray 46’). Subs not used: Brook (GK), Spencer.
Derby: Evans (GK), Oduroh, Moloney, Robinson, Bardell (C) (Grewal-Pollard 46’), Solomon (Brailsford 88’), Taylor-Hart, Bates (Richards 82’), Cybulski, Oseni (Ibrahim 51’), Vigar. Subs not used: Roberts.
Venue: LNER Community Stadium, York
Referee: D. Watson
Booked: Greenwood (Leeds) Bardell, Robinson, Bates (Derby)
Leeds United Under-21s earned a hard-fought and thoroughly deserved three points at home to Derby County Under-21s on Monday night, extending their lead at the top of the Premier League 2 Division 2 table.
First half goals from Sam Greenwood and Joe Snowdon put Leeds into a commanding lead, before Sonny Perkins - who had assisted the opening two goals - showed great composure to find the net himself in the final 10 minutes.
Coming into the match, Paco Gallardo’s side knew that three points would move them clear at the top of the table, with Nottingham Forest and Southampton chasing closely behind.
The Whites got off to a perfect start. After the opening of the match had very few chances, Snowdon won the ball high and played in Perkins. He then rounded Harry Evans and squared back across the goal for Greenwood to fire home at close range!
Midway through the first half, Leeds had a second! Perkins was the creator again, as he skipped down the wing and cut the ball back to Snowdon - who powered home a strike from the edge of the box to double the lead!
The visitors were struggling against the energy and high-press of the home side and they would often look to go long, with set-plays being the only real chances.
From one of those, the Rams filled the penalty area and saw the ball drop kindly for Harrison Solomon. As he poked it goalwards, Kris Moore was perfectly positioned to clear off the line.
In a first half that seen Leeds dominate the ball, there hadn’t been a huge amount of chances, but after taking two of them they would go into the break with an important lead.
HALF TIME: Leeds United U21 2-0 Derby County U21
As the second half began, Gallardo was able to make changes to his side. He brought on Archie Gray as he stepped up his return from injury, replacing the scorer of the second goal, Snowdon.
After stopping a chance late in the first half, Moore came close at the beginning of the second to scoring one. He flicked a header narrowly wide of the goal from Greenwood’s excellent corner.
Darko Gyabi was seeing plenty of the ball and in the second half, Derby had received three yellow cards, all of which were for fouling the United midfielder.
Derby’s best chance of the game came just after the hour. Kido Taylor-Hart had it, but after rushing into the box, his shot was superbly turned around the post by Harry Christy.
The Leeds stopper would be busy again moments later. This time it was Bartosz Cybulski with the chance, he struck low towards the bottom corner, only to see the impressive Christy save well again.
Into the final 10 minutes at the LNER Community Stadium in York, the vast majority of the 402 spectators were able to see their side wrap up the points with another well-crafted goal.
Gyabi picked up the ball deep in his own half and looked up, spotted the run of Perkins and played a pinpoint pass through to him. The forward composed himself, rounded the ‘keeper once again and this time took the shot on himself to fire home and make it three.
That goal meant Leeds were able to see out the final few moments in control of the match, staying calm and keeping hold of a well deserved clean sheet as well as the points. Next up is a trip to West Bromwich Albion, with four games left to play of the campaign.
FULL TIME: Leeds United U21 3-0 Derby County U21