GOAL-SCORING winger Stuart Dallas insisted this draw at Ipswich Town could provide another building block for Leeds United in their attempt to finish in the Championship play-offs.
Fifth-placed Leeds mustered few attempts at goal on a tricky Portman Road pitch and fell behind in the ninth minute when Freddie Sears volleyed home after Grand Ward’s right-flank cross.
After United’s Ronaldo Vieira saw his rising shot gathered by home goalkeeper Bartosz Bialkowski, mid-table Ipswich were then somehow denied a second when Jonas Knudsen’s close-range effort was narrowly deflected over the crossbar.
Leeds levelled three minutes before the break when Dallas latched onto Chris Wood’s flicked header from Hadi Sacko’s cross to squeeze the ball home from a tight angle.
David McGoldrick went close to bagging Ipswich a second-half winner on three separate occasions, first when seeing a cute lob hit the crossbar.
The Ipswich striker then completely failed to connect with a an easy close-range volley before seeing a later effort brilliantly saved by Whites’ goalkeeper Rob Green.
Leeds failed to muster a shot on target after the interval and will only be three points ahead of dangerously poised eighth-placed side Fulham if the Cottagers win their two games in hand.
Fulham will take in the first of those at fourth-bottom Bristol City on Wednesday evening and the other game in hand is at home to second bottom Blackburn Rovers on Tuesday, March 14,
United, meanwhile, face a Yorkshire derby against in-form Sheffield Wednesday at Elland Road next Saturday lunch-time.
The two clubs are level on points with Sheffield Wednesday sixth, but the Owls have a game in hand.
“It was important that we came here and didn’t get beat,” said Dallas, of Saturday’s draw at Portman Road.
“Obviously we wanted to win the game, but if you can’t win it, you’ve got to make sure you don’t lose and we showed again that we have got a great determination.
“It’s a good point for us and it gives us something to build on next week.”
Leeds United: Green, Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Berardi, Vieira (Bridcutt 45), O’Kane, Sacko (Barrow 77), Hernandez, Dallas, Wood (Doukara 85). Unused substitutes: Silvestri, Cooper, Pedraza, Roofe.
Ipswich Town: Bialkowski, Spence, Chambers, Berra, Knudsen, Kenlock, Skuse (Bru 60), Ward, Huws (Bishop 81), McGoldrick (Moore 90), Sears. Unused substitutes: Gerken, Emmanuel, Smith, Pitman.
Referee: K Stroud (Hampshire).