Leeds United gear up for testing Yorkshire derby

Souleymayne Doukara shoots home Leeds United's goal at Ipswich. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Souleymayne Doukara shoots home Leeds United's goal at Ipswich. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
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After beating one side from South Yorkshire last weekend, Leeds United now tackle another, but know they face a much tougher task of bringing home three points from their trip to Sheffield Wednesday in another televised match on Saturday.

Steve Evans’ side also know they will have to up their game on recent weeks as they face an Owls side increasing in confidence and pushing for a play-off place at least in the Sky Bet Championship.

Wednesday are the most improved side in the division this term after taking off the negative shackles that held them back last year to become one of the better footballing sides in the competition.

They are one of the bigger spending teams as well and that investment has made them a much stronger attacking side and taken them to seventh place with just six losses in their first 26 matches.

Early signs of their ability came when they played Leeds off the pitch in the first half of the initial meeting between the two sides at Elland Road back in August, although United hit back strongly against them and fully deserved to get their draw in the end and will be drawing on this when they meet again at Hillsborough.

Leeds themselves have improved results-wise and took an eight-match unbeaten run into Tuesday’s game at Ipswich only to lose out to an injury-time goal against opponents in the play-off positions.

United were given a dream start with Souleymane Doukara’s second goal in two games coming after just 12 seconds, but they failed to cash in and created all too few chances after this.

Luke Chambers equalised five minutes into the second half, but Leeds looked set to bring home what would have been a good point only to have their hopes dashed by Brett Pitman’s goal in the second minute of added time.

The result dropped the Whites back down to 15th and head coach Evans was critical of the display and demanding a reaction at Hillsborough.

He said: “We had a perfect start scoring in the first minute but their two goals came from two crosses when we switched off. They were two poor goals.

“Ipswich are a benchmark for us, but I don’t think they deserved the win. In spells, they were disjointed and just as bad as we were.

“It demonstrated to me that we need to bring some more quality into the football club and we are trying to do that.

“For the first goal, we’d talked about the boy Chambers arriving at the back post because it’s what he does, he’s scored a couple recently.

“You show players clips and you walk them through it on the training ground and if they don’t carry it out, ultimately it will tell you if they do it consistently then they’re not good enough.

“We need to win Saturday. I said before this game if we don’t take anything from here then we need to go and win at Hillsborough.

“And we will try to go and win it. We enjoyed the run and now we need to go on another one.”