Match report from Elland Road, where the Whites defeated the Magpies.
Leeds United 5 (Bamford 35’, Rodrigo 61’, Dallas 77’, Alioski 85’, Harrison 88’)
Newcastle United 2 (Hendrick 26’, Clark 65’)
Leeds United: Meslier, Ayling, Cooper (C), Stuart Dallas, Phillips, Klich (Shackleton 89’), Alioski, Raphinha, Harrison, Rodrigo (Hernandez 82’), Bamford (Roberts 83’) Subs not used: Casilla, Poveda, Pascal Stuijk, Leif Davis.
Newcastle United: Darlow, Murphy, Fernandez, Clark, Lewis, Hendrick (Krafth 62’), Longstaff, Hayden, Fraser (Almiron 75’), Joelinton (Gayle 74’), Wilson. Subs not used: Gillespie, Ritchie, Shelvey, Carroll.
A five-star performance from Leeds United saw them claim a valuable three points against Newcastle United under the lights of Elland Road.
Goals from Patrick Bamford, Rodrigo, Stuart Dallas, Ezgjan Alioski and Jack Harrison gave the Whites a 5-2 victory over the Magpies, in what was an impressive display.
Head coach Marcelo Bielsa was in charge of his 114th game for the club this evening, overseeing his side taking on Newcastle United in the Premier League.
Tonight’s match made it the most fixtures the Argentinian has managed at any one club, having surpassed the 113 games he oversaw at Athletic Bilbao.
An unchanged starting line-up was named, with the team looking to bounce back after defeat to West Ham United on Friday.
Rodrigo kept his place in the starting XI along with Bamford up front for the Whites, with the latter looking to add to his tally of eight goals so far this season. Robin Koch and Diego Llorente remained sidelined due to injury.
The opening 20 minutes or so of the match was dominated by Bielsa’s side, the majority of the play being in the visiting half of the pitch. A well worked bit of football allowed Raphinha to have the first effort of the game, firing over the bar.
Karl Darlow was forced into action for the first time following a corner. The set-piece was whipped into the middle of the pitch, where captain Liam Cooper rose highest and powered a header at goal, only to see the Newcastle stopper deny him.
Following a spell of sustained pressure from Leeds, the Magpies did look to come into the game. A quick breakaway - which was led by central defender Ciaran Clark - forced Illan Meslier to save from Ryan Fraser’s low effort.
Moments after, Fraser would play a key part as his side went ahead in the game. He crossed into the middle, Callum Wilson flicked it on at the near-post and Jeff Hendrick was at the back-post to volley home and put Newcastle ahead.
The response was good following the goal, with constant attacking pressure on show. Raphinha hit a thunderous volley inside the box which was saved well by Darlow, with Dallas then seeing another goal bound effort blocked moments later.
The lively Brazilian winger was then involved again, heading over the bar from Alioski’s cross, before he did create the equaliser for Leeds. When his cross was headed onto the cross bar by Rodrigo, top-scorer Bamford arrived and cushioned head home the rebound at close range. That sent the teams in level at the break.
HALF TIME: Leeds United 1-1 Newcastle United
When the action got going again, Bamford was the first to force a save in the second 45. Neat interplay on the edge of the Newcastle area allowed the striker to shoot, but his effort was denied.
The second effort was sublime, and put Marcelo Bielsa’s side ahead on his landmark occasion. When Harrison controlled superbly on the wing, his drilled cross was cleverly left by Bamford and the onrushing Rodrigo powered a diving header into the bottom corner to make it 2-1 to the Whites.
Newcastle nearly hit back instantly. Jacob Murphy breaking away from a Leeds corner found teammate Callum Wilson inside the box. His shot on goal was into the turf and could have looped over Meslier, but the ‘keeper showed his awareness to tip over the bar.
However, the following corner did see the visitors equalise as Clark jumped highest in the box, to power his header into the bottom corner and level proceedings at 2-2.
Steve Bruce went to his bench and made three substitutions in short succession, but it was the starting XI of Leeds United that were the next to score in the match.
Mateusz Klich was the man to chip a cross into the middle this time and once again Bamford caused the problems by distracting the defence. The ball went over the striker’s head and arriving at the back-post to turn home with a controlled header was Dallas.
In what had become a highly entertaining second half, the Whites weren’t done with the scoring. Newcastle had a corner which was well defended, allowing Raphinha to break away.
The winger had the opportunity to go it alone but chose to wait for his teammates and what a decision that was, as he slipped in Alioski to fire into the top corner, giving Leeds their fourth of the match.
The visitors had clearly not learnt from the previous corner, and a near enough carbon copy happened again moments later. This time it was Harrison who broke away at pace through the midfield and he did decide to go it alone.
Just like Raphinha’s choice previously, Harrison made the correct one too as the winger unleashed an unstoppable 25-yarder screamer into the top corner. That was goal five and it settled a fully deserved three points for the Whites.
FULL TIME: Leeds United 5-2 Newcastle United
Booked: Klich, Phillips, Raphinha (Leeds)
Referee: Simon Hooper
Venue: Elland Road