United return to winning ways with 1-0 victory at Elland Road...
UNITED 1 (Doukara 59), BRISTOL CITY 0
United team: Silvestri, Wootton, Bellusci, Cooper, Taylor, Dallas, Bridcutt, Murphy (Adeyemi 90), Cook, Carayol (Wood 54), Doukara (Antenucci 85). Subs: Peacock-Farrell, Coyle, Bamba, Phillips.
Bristol City team: O'Donnell, Ayling, Flint, Baker (Pearce 45), Bryan, Burns, Gladwin (Reid 61), Pack (Wilbraham 78), Smith, Freeman, Kodjia. Subs: O'Leary, Little, Wagstaff, Agard.
Referee: Charles Breakspear
Booked: Taylor, Antenucci, Adeyemi, Bellusci (United), Baker, Kodjia (Bristol City)
Att: 20,441 (641 Bristol City)
The visit of Bristol City saw United head coach Steve Evans name an unchanged starting line-up from the team beaten away to Sheffield Wednesday seven days earlier. There were changes among the substitutes, however, as Chris Wood returned from a hamstring injury to occupy a place on the bench alongside Kalvin Phillips, who stepped in for the injured Alex Mowatt.
After a somewhat cagey start to proceedings, it was the visitors who had the game’s first sight of goal after 13 minutes as Nathan Baker towered a header high and wide after rising to meet Luke Ayling’s free-kick.
United’s first effort on Richard O’Donnell’s goal then came seven minutes later, but Mustapha Carayol ballooned his 30-yard free-kick into the South Stand after a foul on Luke Murphy brought some smart build-up play to a halt.
United were on the receiving end of the best chance of an underwhelming start, though, with City debut Ben Gladwin stealing possession from Liam Bridcutt inside the area before seeing his strike blocked by Marco Silvestri at the near post.
Jonathan Kodjia then threatened an opener for the visitors as the game passed the half-hour mark, sending a header inches wide after connecting with a right-wing cross inside the area.
The Robins continued to enjoy the better of the chances as they ended the first half the stronger of the two, with Gladwin’s header sailing over before Silvestri rushed off his line to block Kodjia from close-range after the striker had wriggled free inside the United area.
United made a brighter start to the second half, though, forcing some stern defending from the visitors to clear a series of dangerous crosses into the box.
And Evans’ intent was clear as he introduced Chris Wood just nine minutes after the restart, replacing Carayol with the striker as he urged his side forward.
The deadlock was eventually broken on 59 minutes and Wood played his part, causing a nuisance inside the area as the visitors failed to deal with Stuart Dallas’ right-wing cross before the ball fell for Souleymane Doukara to hammer his third goal from four games into the bottom corner.
Half-time substitute Alex Pearce passed up a golden opportunity to equalise for the visitors just five minutes later at the opposite end, heading a back-post corner over the bar from six yards out, but United were buoyed by their opener and went in search of a second.
The visitors managed to deal with further testing deliveries into the box, though, and started to ask questions of their own as they started to throw men forward, with Aaron Wilbraham introduced in attack.
Defender Aden Flint headed a glorious opportunity wide after being found unmarked at the back post, before Silvestri got down sharply to clutch Luke Ayling’s low strike from inside the area.
The Robins continued to press in the closing stages but found themselves up against a stern Leeds defence, who held out in four minutes of added time to seal a return to winning ways.