Wolves 0 Leeds United 1: ‘Leeds character shone through’ - Monk

Leeds United's players celebrate at full time Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

Leeds United's players celebrate at full time Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

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Leeds’ £3m winger Kemar Roofe scored his first goal for the club as they beat Wolves 1-0 at Molineux.

Roofe, a summer signing from Oxford, pounced in the 71st minute to earn Leeds only their second win in five games.

Leeds had to get the three points the hard way as they rode their luck in the opening period when Wolves were on top.

Wolves created a hatful of chances but paid the price for not making that dominance count and have now collected a solitary point from their last 15.

Garry Monk was thrilled with the Leeds display and said the Whites are “really competitive now”.

Monk said: “Overall our character shone through today and we got the deserved three points.

United's Luke Ayling battles with Wolves Dave Edwards. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

United's Luke Ayling battles with Wolves Dave Edwards. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

“I think we saw it out quite comfortably. Three points and a clean sheet - you have got to be happy.

“It was an excellent performance. A really gritty typical Championship game where you have to dig in.”

Following a low-key opening to the game, Leeds suddenly found themselves under a spell of intense pressure.

A misplaced header by Eunan O’Kane after 18 minutes let in striker Nouha Dicko but he lobbed his shot over the bar from 12 yards while under pressure from central defender Pontus Jansson.

Garry Monk Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

Garry Monk Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

Leeds were again thankful to the intervention of Jansson four minutes later when he blocked a close-range shot from Dicko, who had been picked out by a pass from Joao Teixeira.

Leeds were struggling to keep the lively Teixeira in check and they were relieved to see the on-loan Benfica winger curl his 24th-minute shot narrowly wide of Rob Green’s far post.

Teixeira then turned provider for Helder Costa, who saw his drive from 25 yards dip just over the bar.

Having soaked up such a lot of pressure, Leeds badly needed to stop the flow and almost did it in spectacular fashion through Hadi Sacko in the 38th minute.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Leeds United.
United's Hadi Sacko celebrates with Luke Ayling and Kalvin Phillips, after his cross was turned in by Keemar Roofe.
8th October2016.
Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Leeds United. United's Hadi Sacko celebrates with Luke Ayling and Kalvin Phillips, after his cross was turned in by Keemar Roofe. 8th October2016. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

A long ball out of defence by Kyle Bartley released Sacko, who saw his rasping drive fly to safety off the top of Carl Ikeme’s crossbar.

It proved to be a brief respite for Leeds as less than 60 seconds later, they were defending frantically again with Jon Dadi Bodvarsson having his shot blocked before Teixeira’s follow-up was saved by Green.

On the stroke of half-time, Wolves were again cursing Jansson as he deflected Costa’s shot from another Teixeira cross over the bar.

When Costa again went close from long range in the 64th minute it seemed only a matter of time before Wolves’ pressure finally paid off.

But they were undone when right-back Matt Doherty lost possession cheaply. Sacko pounced on the loose ball and rolled a cross into the path of Roofe, who had the simple task of stabbing the ball home from six yards.

Leeds should then really have made the game safe three minutes from time only for striker Chris Wood to lash his half-volley over the bar from 10 yards.

United's Pontus Jansson gives his shirt to a fan at the end. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

United's Pontus Jansson gives his shirt to a fan at the end. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

That could have been a costly miss but Wolves’ dismal afternoon in front of goal was summed up in stoppage time when Costa failed to hit the target at the far post from only six yards.

Monk added: “We are going in the right direction. You can see it. The group are very good together. They were determined and got the three points.

“We need to be a bit more clever with the final decisions but that will come. They are young players and young players do not always make the right decisions, but we are getting better as a team and when it doesn’t go our way we show character.

“They are growing into it and it is my job to keep improving them and pushing them.”

Wolverhampton: Ikeme, Doherty, Batth, Hause, Silvio, Helder Costa, Edwards, Saiss, Joao Teixeira, Bodvarsson, Dicko.

Subs: Stearman, John, Coady, Oniangue, Lonergan, Gladon, Ivan Cavaleiro.

Leeds: Green, Ayling, Jansson, Bartley, Taylor, Phillips, Vieira, Sacko, O’Kane, Roofe, Wood.

Subs: Cooper, Antonsson, Doukara, Silvestri, Grimes, Mowatt, Coyle.

Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire)

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