Full Time: Leeds United 3-1 Stoke City
Marcelo Bielsa began life at Leeds with a comfortable 3-1 win over Stoke City to send Elland Road into ecstasy. Potters goalkeeper Jack Butland made a mistake which contributed to Gary Rowett’s men putting up a weak show against the lively hosts.
Leeds went into a 2-0 lead before half-time and looked menacing every time they created a chance. Stoke did pull one back after the break through Benik Afobe but Liam Cooper scored around the hour mark to restore comfort for the Peacocks.
Here’s how the Leeds players fared in their first game of the Championship season:
Leeds Player Ratings
Bailey Peacock-Farrell (7.5)
Peacock-Farrell didn’t have to do too much in the game. He was composed on the ball and nobody expected him to save the Afobe penalty after the way it was struck. A satisfying day out.
Luke Ayling (7)
Ayling was solid and composed as ever, marking James McClean very well and passing forward without too many errors.
Gaetano Berardi (7.5)
Berardi, as he always has been, was committed to the cause by reading the game diligently and passing forward with accuracy.
Liam Cooper (8)
Cooper was excellent throughout and scored a well-taken goal to restore the two-goal lead for his team.
Barry Douglas (8)
It was Douglas’ first game at the club and he showed why Bielsa wanted him. The Scot was accurate in his deliveries from various situations and assisted Cooper with lovely corner.
Kalvin Phillips (7)
Shielded the backline with immense expertise but wasn’t able to be incisive and accurate in his passing.
Pablo Hernandez (8.5)
Hernandez’s technical ability on the ball was a joy to watch. The Spaniard got lucky when his shot was let in by Stoke goalie Butland.
Mateusz Klich (8.5)
Klich ran the show from central midfield and never allowed the likes of Joe Allen and Badou N’Diaye to settle into the contest.
Samuel Saiz (9)
Saiz put in a complete performance in central midfield. Good in tackling, sumptuous in passing and also tracked back to help the defenders out.
Ezgjan Alioski (7)
Alioski has added end product to his game which was on show today. The Macedonian can further improve, which is a terrifying prospect for any defence.
Kemar Roofe (8)
Never stopped running throughout the game and stretched the defence at times. He dropped deep to make tackles and link up the attacks. A good team performance from the striker.
Stuart Dallas (Subbed on after 76 mins)
Dallas didn’t have any time to really affect the game.
Lewis Baker (Subbed on after 88 mins)
Baker came on and it allowed the Elland Road crowd to give Saiz a standing ovation for his terrific display.
Jack Harrison (Subbed on after 90 mins)
Unlike other subs, Harrison had no time to impact much.