TWO Rodolph Austin penalties earned Leeds United a 2-2 draw from their visit to League Two champions Chesterfield.
Austin converted from the spot twice in the second half to cancel out a brace from Sam Morsy and spare United from another defeat to lower league opposition.
Morsy produced two finishes in the space of 12 minutes to turn the game on its head after Austin opened the scoring at the start of the second period.
But Austin’s calm finish on 86 minutes ensured the honour was shared at the end of a week in which Leeds were beaten 2-0 at Mansfield Town.
United’s head coach, David Hockaday increased the significance of today’s friendly by stating beforehand that the team he chose would be his team for Millwall on August 9, at least barring the arrival of new players before then.
Leeds had hoped to have Federico Viviani signed on loan from Roma in time for their trip to Chesterfield but the move appeared to have collapsed on Saturday morning and Hockaday was left to work with his existing squad.
He took a slightly unexpected approach at the Proact Stadium, fielding only one of the club’s five new recruits. Goalkeeper Marco Silvestri started but Tommaso Bianchi, Souleymane Doukara, Gaetano Berardi sat on the bench, alongside replacement keeper Stuart Taylor.
Hockaday employed what seemed to be a 4-1-4-1 formation, with Austin in front of the defence and Matt Smith alone up front and United were short of natural width again. Chesterfield offered most of the threat in the opening stages.
Eoin Doyle bundled an early chance wide from close range and Silvestri pulled off an excellent save to deny Sam Morsy with his legs after Chesterfield cut through United’s midfield.
The Italian keeper was well placed again moments later to push away Doyle’s rising effort with both hands.
The inventive Gary Roberts promptly produced a 50-yard lob which landed on the roof of Silvestri’s net and Leeds struggled to create openings in return. Austin’s mishit effort midway through the half posed no problem for Chesterfield keeper Tommy Lee.
Only occasionally did Leeds get in behind the home defence and Murphy should have done better with a weak header beneath an Aidy White cross shortly before half-time.
Smith was replaced by Doukara at the break having picked up a back injury in a heavy challenge and United were ahead within two minutes of the restart.
Jimmy Ryan dived into a tackle on Luke Murphy inside the box and Austin converted a calm penalty, sliding the ball to Lee’s right, but Chesterfield responded on 55 minutes when Morsy fired home from an unmarked position on the edge of the box.
And Morsy put the hosts in front on 67 minutes, turning and shooting past Silvestri after substitute Armand Gnanduillet nodded a header to him inside the box.
But Leeds continued to press and Austin forced a draw with another penalty four minutes from time after Daniel Jones felled Sam Byram.