Leeds United 2 Bolton Wanderers 1: Paul Heckingbottom hopes Caleb Ekuban is lifted by his first Championship strike

Caleb Ekuban, right, celebrates after scoring his first Championship goal for Leeds United (Picture: Bruce Rollinson).
Caleb Ekuban, right, celebrates after scoring his first Championship goal for Leeds United (Picture: Bruce Rollinson).
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Leeds united head coach Paul Heckingbottom was able to enjoy his job once again as his side ended a four-match winless run with victory against Bolton.

Goals from Caleb Ekuban and Pablo Hernandez early in each half secured the Whites just their second win of 2018, both of which have come since Heckingbottom took charge in February.

He was in an upbeat mood after the victory although he felt the winning margin should have been bigger.

“I’ve always said the best bit of this job is the games and the best bit of that is winning,” he said.

“That’s what it’s all about so I’m delighted with the win and the three points, and it was deserved.

“(Leeds started well) in both halves. We wanted to be on the front foot and aggressive and set the tempo.

“Ultimately it was us who made the game difficult for ourselves by not really capitalising when we were on top, not taking our chances and conceding when we were in a comfortable stage of the game.

“There were definitely a lot of chances we should’ve put away.”

Ekuban’s strike was his first in the Championship, but the forward was denied on two occasions by Bolton goalkeeper Ben Alnwick in one-on-one situations. Heckingbottom, who confirmed defender Liam Cooper will miss “a few weeks” with a thigh tear and midfielder Adam Forshaw sat the game out with a calf injury, hopes Ekuban focuses on the strike that went in.

He added: “Everyone who watches Leeds, his team-mates especially, appreciates his value for the team and the selfless nature of his game, but he’s a frontman and he wants to score.”

Ekuban’s first Championship goal gave the hosts a fourth-minute lead, which Hernandez doubled early in the second half.

Adam Le Fondre quickly pulled one back for Bolton, but they could not find an equaliser.

Bolton invited early pressure, with captain Andrew Taylor’s underhit back pass being picked off by Ekuban. He teed up Ezgjan Alioski, but the winger could only curl an effort wide of the far post.

Within minutes Pierre-Michel Lasogga’s ball in from the right was not dealt with and it fell for Ekuban to poke home.

Leeds’s second goal arrived five minutes into the second period. Alioski caused more problems before being denied by Ben Alnwick and the rebound was controlled and turned in by Hernandez.

But two minutes later Le Fondre headed in Ameobi’s inswinging free-kick.