An entertaining draw in PL2.
Premier League 2
Newcastle United 2 (Parkinson 36’, Ferguson 84’ og)
Leeds United 2 (Joseph 7’, Allen 37’)
Newcastle: Thompson (GK), Carlyon, Bondswell (C), Wiggett, Hackett (Savage 60’), J. Miley, Diallo, Miley, Parkinson (Emerson 81’), Huntley, Vilca (Ndiweni 60’). Subs not used: Smith (GK), Thompson.
Leeds: Van den Heuvel (GK), Moore, Mullen, Monteiro, Ferguson, Gyabi, Spencer, Greenwood (Thomas 62’), Allen (Wilson 62’), McGurk (Coleman 68’), Joseph (C). Subs not used: Christy (GK), Debayo.
Venue: Whitley Park
Booked: Huntley, J. Miley (Newcastle) Gyabi, Coleman, Wilson (Leeds)
Sent-off: Savage (Newcastle)
Leeds United Under-21s travelled away from home on Monday evening, taking on Newcastle United in this Premier League 2 Division 2 clash.
The Whites ended a run of three straight defeats after their return from the international break, missing the chance to go top of the table if they had secured the three points in the North East - but had to settle for one after the late equaliser.
Inside just three minutes, Leeds should have taken the lead. From Sam Greenwood’s pinpoint corner into the box, he found the head of Jeremiah Mullen. The central-defender powered a header on goal, only to see Max Thompson produce the first of many excellent saves in the first half.
However, it wouldn’t be long before the Whites were ahead. Top-scorer Mateo Joseph was the player to break the deadlock - but he owed plenty to Charlie Allen for the build-up.
The midfielder burst forward after pressing hard and charging down his marker, winning the ball high up the pitch before cutting it back across the box for Joseph to slide it home into an empty net.
It would then be a while before the next chance, but Newcastle equalised in a similar fashion to Leeds’ opener, winning the ball high up the pitch.
Ben Parkinson was the player to get the hosts level, as similarly to Allen, he charged down the ball and forced a mistake at the back to race in on goal - before smashing home into the top corner and making it one each.
The game was level for less than a minute though, as a stunning piece of skill from Sean McGurk opened up the chance to put his side back ahead.
The winger beat two on the wing, before cutting inside and then beating the goalkeeper with his low effort. On the line, Allen was there to make sure, powering into the back of the net. Both players claimed the goal, but it was awarded to Allen and Leeds were back ahead!
One last chance before the break came for Joseph, when he forced a superb save from Thompson after smashing the ball towards the top corner. When the half-time whistle blew to end the opening 45 minutes, it had been an entertaining half.
HALF TIME: Newcastle United 1-2 Leeds United
There were no changes at the break and chances came quickly at either end. Dani van den Heuvel had to be alert to deny Parkinson a second, whilst McGurk and then Darko Gyabi were denied down the other end.
Each side then made a double change. Greenwood and Allen were replaced by Marley Wilson and Luca Thomas for Leeds - whilst the home side brought on Remi Savage and Michael Ndiweni.
When the Whites did find the back of the net again, it was ruled out for offside. McGurk played a clever ball through for Joseph who rounded the ‘keeper and slotted home, but saw the flag go up. McGurk left the pitch shortly after, replaced by Cian Coleman.
Coleman was straight into the action and was the next to come closest to scoring. He continued a trend in the game by winning possession high up the pitch before shooting left-footed, beating the ‘keeper, but not the covering defender on the line who cleared.
With six minutes to go and against the run of play, Newcastle were level. Matthew Bondswell pulled the ball back in the box and unfortunately for him and Leeds, Connor Ferguson deflected it into his own net.
In the final few minutes, the match remained frantic with chances at each end. When Thomas raced in on goal, he was brought down by Savage and the home side were reduced to 10 for the remainder of the game.
Spencer’s subsequent powerful free-kick was saved by Thompson yet again, and cleared. The hosts then raced up the pitch themselves and Van den Heuvel made his own excellent stop, denying Ndiweni.
A final chance came and was met with another excellent Thompson save again - as he denied Thomas one-on-one this time, in an impressive performance from Magpies number one.
FULL TIME: Newcastle United 2-2 Leeds United