There were so many highlights from Leeds United‘s sparkling demolition of West Bromwich Albion, that it’s really difficult to pick out any notably outstanding element of what was the classic “statement victory”. There were a couple of coolly-taken goals from Iceman striker Patrick Bamford, there was another defensive juggernaut performance from skipper Liam Cooper, and of course we had Pablo Hernandez, our own Spanish wizard, back to his best with a sublime, world-class strike and so much more as he twinkled brightly all over the pitch.
But the abiding memory I will take away from a highly memorable evening is that of young Tyler Roberts, late of the Sandwell parish but now very definitely Leeds, striding forward from an unaccustomed deeper position to cause havoc in the defensive ranks of his hapless former club.
Tyler was a revelation on the night. Surging through midfield and beating baffled Baggies with sinuous, snake-hipped ease, he was a continual threat to West Brom and helped himself to a couple of juicy assists for the Iceman’s brace of goals. The first of these reminded me of Kemar Roofe‘s round the corner pass to Gjanni Alioski to score at Norwich early in the season. Roberts’ ball through to Bamford was part of a beautifully-worked goal that began with an intelligent ball into the area from Mateusz Klich, and was finished beautifully by our number 9 as he held off a challenge from behind to finish clinically.
On this form, Tyler Roberts should have a major part to play in the run-in to the end of the season. His work rate and decision-making on Friday were different class and, on a night when every man in a white shirt did himself immense credit, Tyler emerged as the clear Man of the Match.
Honourable mention too for Alioski, who combines tireless running with that annoying nuisance value which is so handy in demoralising the opposition. The Macedonian Marvel deserved his last-gasp clincher, put on a plate for him by sub Jamie Shackleton after more good work from Pablo and Klich.
Perhaps the most notable aspect of all about last night’s performance was its inherent topsy-turvydom, with the Whites murdering a WBA side that had won nine of its previous ten away games, just days after falling to defeat against a QPR team that had lost seven on the spin. Go figure. But the upshot was that all is forgiven from Tuesday night, in the sheer joy of seeing the real Leeds turn up to send a promotion contender packing.
The sixty-four thousand dollar question now must be: with a tough game at Bristol City coming up next weekend, can United replicate this level and standard of performance? If they’re to do that, it may well be because Tyler Roberts has now found both his niche in the team and the secret of his maximum effectiveness in this new, deeper role.
In which case, Leeds United might just have discovered the golden key to the Premier League‘s Promised Land.
Tyler has improved every game and it culminated in last night superb performance. I hope you are right Rob and he keeps up the momentum,if last night is the indicator of things to come from him,bring it on!!!!
Tyler was awesome in this game Rob. I think we forget the lad has just turned 20. Mature beyond his years but if he keeps this up we’ve got yet another gem. MOT
“I love it when a plan comes together”. What a team! OK, Millwall did us no favours today – did you really think they would? – but last night Leeds showed just how its destiny is in its own hands (er, feet). The predicted ‘burn out’ has burnt out and Beilsa’s boys are growing stronger, faster, smarter where it counts: at the business end of the season, with a full complement of players! Additionally, I love it when we can sing “we’re gonna see you win” and know it. MOT.
I can’t make my mind up as to what was the better goal last night.
Hernandez superb strike , minimum back lift.
Bamford goal.Give and go. Great balance clinical finish.
Bamford’s second. He could have gone down after a heavy challenge (like Gayle almost certainly would have) in the box.he stayed strong and deserved the deflection (great work by Roberts for the assist again).
The fourth. Maybe my favourite. Great close control by Bamford tight to the touch line. Quick passing ,then young Shackleton (please let’s see some more of him) perfect cross to the total Alioski to hammer home.
Same team that lost to QPR! Bielsa a true genius. MOT.
What an atmosphere at Elland road last night the kop and south stand were buzzing and was a glorious sight to see with the cocophany of champions of Europe still reverberating on my ears today. I don’t think many of us saw that result coming. Both the usual whipping boys (alioski and roberts) proved the boo boys wrong last night and most importantly someone has explained the offside rule to alioski. Roberts played like mahrez last night in the pocket and had sublime trickery and guile in abundance. I was so proud of our lads and got the whites coach back to the midlands with the lads and a special guest Jeff Astle’s daughter who had to listen to us singing all the way home lol ‘she one of our own.. astles one of our own’ lol and ‘can we play you every week’ !!!! Lol
An absolutely stunning performance from everyone last night and great to see Luke Ayling back to something approaching his best.
I also thought the referee was commendable last night ; it makes a bloody refreshing change!
The other day I asked for a pick me up, I’ve been a bit down, FLU dragging on, feeling low etc.
Thank you Leeds United, that was a perfect response to the QPR result. Boy do I feel better. Now keep it up
I know what it’s like to feel this way brother. Hope you’re feeling more positive in life after the baggit’s win! Try not to connect your mental well being with leeds they are separate entities. Leeds is in your heart. Your not on your own you have millions of Leeds United brothers. I hope all our leeds hearts will be smiling come what may.
Apart from United, l rated West Brom as the best team in the championship,
and we absolutely thrashed them. It was an electrifying performance all round, Everyone played superbly well, and what motors Alioski and Roberts have. It was the most complete performance from a united team that l have seen for years. The squad is so obviously united, looking at the faces of all the players who were not involved, they were just as elated, as the match players. Great to see.
I thought just the same when I saw Bamford celebrating his second and United’s third, with half the subs bench hanging round his neck. Good to see a celebratory fist pump from BPF on the whistle, too.
Well Rob I’m still on cloud 9 after what simply was our most complete performance of the season by some way imo and summed up perfectly by Marcelo Bielsa: “The most important thing is the effort, attitude, behaviour, state of mind and effort made by the whole team during the whole game. I would say it’s an exclusive win of the players. We didn’t have one single minute where the fans didn’t respond to the players’ efforts“
Passion, belief,desire, determination, confidence , relentlessly all on display in bucketloads for me & still pinching myself just how well we played. I also felt over and above all of this the team seemed to gel as a unit so well with almost telepathic passing & movement which I feel has been missing for some time especially the lack of cutting edge up top. The whole attacking unit looked brilliant and maybe Tyler Roberts direct running in the No10 role has solved that missing spark since Samu left.
Finally what can you say about the incredible support & 90 mins of non stop noise to match the effort of the team who at last really seem to be feeding of the incredible atmosphere of that vital 12th man.
Just feels this may be the turning point of our season somehow after such a comprehensive win over a team that battered us in the reverse fixture & giving our team so much confidence to take into the last 11 games starting at Bristol City. MOT GET IN
I thought Roberts in his slightly different role was instrumental in what was a fantastic victory. Just hoping he can carry that forward because, if he can, we can beat anyone.
Fingers crossed he can Rob & to be fair he’s not started many games this season & it always takes a bit of time to gel especially when Bamford also finding his match sharpness after only a handful of starts. Bench looking strong too with likes of Jamie Shackleton who hugely impresses every time he comes on & hopefully young Jack Clarke back from his virus.