Patrick Bamford believed he scored his 13th goal of the season late
Patrick Bamford felt Leeds were “deprived of a point” after the striker ruled out an equalizer in Friday’s 1-0 defeat at Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The hosts took the lead shortly after the hour when Adama Traore made a thunderous attempt against the crossbar from distance, but the ball bounced back from Illan Meslier into Leeds’ goal.
Bamford believed he had equalized late by reaching the goal before finishing brilliantly, but he was offside. The video assistant referee agreed that this was the right decision.
Bamford scored a goal by VAR in a 4-1 loss to Crystal Palace in November, After the 27-year-old was sidelined after lifting the arm he tried to pass on, he was again injured by a decision made by technology.
“Except for the boys tonight, deprived of a point,” he tweeted before adding sarcastically, “But at least the game makes it better, we’re going back Tuesday.”
The visitors had almost hit just before Meslier’s own goal when Rui Patricio hit Liam Cooper’s header from close range before Bamford’s follow-up became clear.
Ex-Wolves winger Helder Costa also missed a great chance in the last minute but shot straight at Patricio.
The win for the Wolves put them in 11th place over Leeds and continued their resurgence after losing form. They have now won three of their last four Premier League games.
The Leeds defeat was the second in a row after losing 4-2 to Arsenal last time around. This was a much more even encounter, however, and they were unlucky for the kind of goal they conceded and hadn’t scored a goal.
“All the reviews of the game speak for us. The possession, the dominance and the odds,” said Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa.
“We had twice as many chances as they, but we didn’t make it.”
Wolves turn the tide after a bad run
Nuno Espirito Santo praises winger Adama Traore
This has been arguably the Wolves’ toughest season since returning to the top division in 2018, after having to deal with missing key striker Raul Jimenez and loss of form for much of the season due to injury.
In eight games in the Premier League without a win they fell from the top six to the bottom half of the table, but that bad run was stopped by a win against Arsenal in early February and they have not lost since then.
They looked back on their attacking best against Leeds, with the excellent Pedro Neto impressing again.
The 20-year-old Portugal international has scored five goals and four assists in Jimenez’s absence and was unhappy not to be on the match sheet.
Neto was at his best in the first half as he scored multiple shots on goal, particularly with a Meslier fingertip.
With the Wolves back in shape and confidence high, Neto in particular could continue to thrive as Nuno Espirito Santo’s side aim to return to the European spots.
Nuno said: “We still have some problems to evaluate, but the approach we have in these difficult moments – always believe, always commit – cannot be said about the attitudes of the players.
“We follow the high standards that we have and let’s keep doing that.”
Leeds senses Phillips’ absence
Leeds are grappling with an extensive injury list but the absence of Kalvin Phillips is an especially heavy blow.
With him on the team this season they had a 50% win rate, but without him that drops to only 17% and his absence was felt against the Wolves.
Leeds’ daring attack creates opportunities – as they did against the Wolves and they were unlucky not to score a point in a late rally – but without Phillips they struggle to control midfield.
The guests passed the ball far too often in the middle of the field in the first half and could have been punished before the unfortunate own goal.
With 32 points from 24 games, Leeds are well on their way to cementing Premier League football for the next season, but one of their priorities this summer will certainly be protecting Phillips appropriately.
According to Marco Bielsa, the absence of Kalvin Phillips is not a loss factor at Wolves
Meslier makes history – the statistics
- Wolves have won seven of their last nine top division games against Leeds United (L2) and have been unbeaten in nine such games at Molineux (W6 D3) since losing 2-0 in September 1973.
- None of Leeds United’s last 19 away games have completed the level – it is the longest straight run of away league games since a 20-game run from November 2002 to November 2003.
- Wolves are the first team to have played a league double against Marcelo Bielsa in the top division since Montpellier and Paris St-Germain defeated their team from Marseille at home and away in Ligue 1 in 2014/15.
- This was only the Wolves’ second 1-0 victory in the Premier League thanks to an own goal. The other goal came against Chelsea in January 2011 when Jose Bosingwa scored a goal. This is the first time Leeds have lost 1-0 after an own goal in the Premier League.
- Leeds’ Illan Meslier (20 years 354 days) became the youngest goalkeeper to score an own goal in the Premier League.
- Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio scored seven saves for his goal. The last goalkeeper of the Wolves who scored more saves in a Premier League game and remained without a goal was Marcus Hahnemann against Everton in March 2010 with nine.
Leeds will host Southampton in the Premier League on Tuesday 23 February (6pm GMT) before the Wolves head to Newcastle on Saturday 27 February (8pm).
Player of the game
Rui PatrícioRui Patrício
22ndNélson Semedo8thsnow28João Moutinho19thCastro Otto
- 11Rui Patrício
- 22ndNélson Semedo
- 28João Moutinho
- 19thCastro OttoReplaced byMarçalat the 60 ‘protocolReplaced byAit-Nouriat the 82 ‘protocol
- 7thgrandsonBooked at 90 minutes
- 12Da SilvaReplaced byFábio Silvaat the 87 ‘protocol
- 2How far
- 17thFábio Silva
- 46ShackletonReplaced byHernándezat the 66 ‘protocol
- 43KlichReplaced byAlioskiat the 81 ‘protocol
- 22ndHarrisonReplaced byHélder Costaat the 81 ‘protocol
- 17thHélder Costa
End of the game, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Leeds United 0.
The second half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Leeds United 0.
Corner, Leeds United. The corner was caused by Rui Patrício.
Missed attempt. The header from Raphinha (Leeds United) from the center of the box is close but missed on the right. Assisted by Luke Ayling with a head pass.
Attempt saved. Hélder Costa (Leeds United) right footed shot from the center of the box is saved by the goalkeeper.
Pedro Neto (Wolverhampton Wanderers) is shown the yellow card.
Corner of Wolverhampton Wanderers. The corner was caused by Pascal Struijk.
Attempt blocked. Fábio Silva (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.
Attempt blocked. Tyler Roberts (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Prepared by Ezgjan Alioski.
Foul by Luke Ayling (Leeds United).
Rayan Aït-Nouri (Wolverhampton Wanderers) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Fábio Silva replaces Willian José.
Foul by Pascal Struijk (Leeds United).
Romain Saïss (Wolverhampton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Corner, Leeds United. The corner was caused by Leander Dendoncker.
Missed attempt. João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Prepared by Willian José.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Rayan Aït-Nouri replaces Marçal due to injury.
Substitution, Leeds United. Hélder Costa replaces Jack Harrison.
Substitution, Leeds United. Ezgjan Alioski replaces Mateusz Klich.
Foul by Mateusz Klich (Leeds United).