Leicester City 0-0 Leeds UnitedSunday 11th August 2013. The day had come at last, the first away day of the season was here. Leeds had been drawn away at Leicester City, last years play off semi final losers, the powers of Sky had deemed it so blockbuster that the fixture must kick off at 4:30pm, on a Sunday, God’s day.

Arriving into Leicester I was greeted by some more than helpful policemen aiding me and my travelling companions in where to get the best pint, there seemed to be quite a high presence, probably ensuring that the ‘3,000’ travelling ‘vile animals’ did not step out of line so early on in the season.

Leicester, as a multicultural city seemed to have a lot to offer, pleasant surroundings, plenty of ale houses, period buildings and a good infrastructure in general and a Greggs, can’t forget the Greggs.

After a couple of beverages and some light pastry covered belly fillers I arrived at The King Power station, a modern yet seemingly homely ground, not quite having the history of say Elland Road, but not the generic, unused feeling of your Pride Park or Reebok. The Leeds fans were, as ever, heard before seen. upon entry, hundreds of the vile animals were topless, singing and dancing in large, Neanderthal like circles, chanting like they belonged to the ancient Kingdom of Sparta. The catering staff even temporarily suspended sales to video the madness that ensued in the underbelly of the stand. Once more the fans ensuring that Leeds United are the best supported club in the world.

As the fans slowly filtered into their seats, team news filtered through and the news was surprising and unsurprising both at the same time, the same team was named that had beaten Brighton 2-1 eight days earlier, but with one notable addition, Rudy Austin. Leeds United captain and cult hero in the making. Arise, Sir Rudy. The game started with the notable chorus of ‘MOT’ drowning out the pathetic attempts of the drum backed Leicester minority, it’s like the few vs the thousands at some clubs, Leeds are always the thousands. The fans backed the team and manager with renewed optimism, hardly surprising, McDermott seems like the kind of man that, even with little backing will do his best to get everything from the team he has, starting with building team morale back up.

The first real chance of the game took some time to materialise, both sides were finding it hard to break the other down, but early on Jason Pearce headed narrowly wide following some good build up play by Leeds. At the other end Leicester looked to threaten the Leeds defence, but could not find a way to test Paddy Kenny, a keeper that is looking a leaner, meaner version of what he was under Colin. The real entertainment was of course happening off the pitch, the Leeds fans were in full voice as ‘We all love Leeds’ echoed around the King Power. A flare was loosed as a fitting gesture to ensure that the world knew we’re still in existence.

Back on the pitch, the first real chance of the game nearly came to fruition as Leicester found space down the flank, only for the inspired captain Austin to find himself, as he did most of the day, in the right place at the right time. Moments later Leeds called upon another unlikely hero in Kevin Stroud, the man in black, as he cooly intercepted a Leicester cut back and calmly flicked a pass to captain fantastic to move the ball away from danger.

Half time came and went pretty quickly, the half time entertainment inside the ground was as fun as ever, toilet seats and counter tops adding to the chaos below the stands.

The second half started and the optimism was restored, Leeds looked solid at back and had some threat going forward, it was a rare and welcome surprise in comparison to last seasons shambolic away day performances. Leicester however were finding their feet, and using ‘home’ advantage worked the best opportunity of the game, James Vardy testing Kenny who could only parry his shot before recovering safely. With substitutions used, both sides were hoping for a miracle moment to break the other and this was nearly gifted as the January transfer Chris Woods turned the exposed Pearce to thunder a strike that beat the Leeds number one, only to rattle the post. Lady luck finally shining on Leeds!

The game seemed to fizzle out quite rapidly after that, the fans had fun, the Leeds fans at least, chanting evermore, and the positive movement of substitutes Matt Smith and Dom Poleon could have been more of a threat against a less resilient defence. but all in all, a point against Leicester away is a point well gained, and two lost for a promotion rival. Hats off to Brian McDermott, he’s taken the same team Warnock had and has turned them into potential winners.

See you at Ipswich! Marching On Together.

– Adam Geary (@adamgeary1)

34 Responses

  1. TSS

    Not a classic by any stretch of the imagination, but I was pleased with the result and performance.

    Having the two strikers play wide seemed to mitigate our goal threat, but it did allow us to control possession a fair bit. I think the idea was to stretch Leicester’s back three and get the ball to Ross McCormack but he didn’t really get any decent chances.

    I called Rodolph Austin as new captain a while back so wasn’t surprised by that. Excellent choice in my opinion, he always gives everything and really gets the crowd going with the big tackles and surging runs. Great performance from him.

    Pearce, so often a target for criticism, had a good game too. All the defence worked well in fairness, aided in no small part by Austin and Green. Peltier still isn’t doing much for me on the right, but it’s his distribution more than anything else.

    Tom Lees’ injury scare underlines how desperately we need another centre-back. Guy stood in front of me summed up the feelings of the crowd when we all thought it was serious – “that’s our season over, then…” Dangerous game we’re playing having no back-up to Lees and Pearce.

    Overall, no complaints from me. McDermott got the best out of the players available to him, so there’s nothing you can criticise really. I said before the game I’d be delighted with a draw to Leicester City, we performed well and got a good result. MOT.

    • henrymouni

      Good spot re the defence TSS.
      Green, Austin and Varney all made valuable clearances, and we seem to be really attacking the ball when it comes into the penalty area.
      Balls into their box were generally poor – too low or too high.
      I was surprised that Austin was made captain, but, on reflection he is a great choice.
      I don’t think I have ever seen him smile!
      A great point for us.

    • Chareose

      We have got back up, Lee Peltier is a good CB. Warnock can also play CB.

      We need to try Green at right full back aswell……

    • Irving08

      I watched it fitfully at the local. It looked like we were set up mainly to counter any threat from Leicester, who fortunately started with the wrong team (had they begun with Wood and Knockear, I think we may have struggled to get a point).
      However my main thought today is what price GFGH will accept for McCormack ? And would BM accept selling sell him if it was a condition of his getting Mills, whom he appears badly to want ?
      My view on McCormack has not changed: he’s a busy and skillful player, whom Managers struggle to fit into an effective team shape. I think his influence can be nullified, when played behind two front men, yet we do not have a front man whom he can play alongside, where he is most effective. Now if we had the boy Jukiewicz from ‘Boro, to act as his foil, it would be a different story.. .I would have spent my million on him without hesitation. That Mowbray is not fool.
      Good to see that my faith in Pearce is not entirely misplaced.

      • Matthew

        I don’t think it would of mattered what side Leicester put out in all honesty, there’s something very wrong over at the King Power and it seems to be affecting their squad. I don’t see them as a top 6 side this season, unless something changes.

        They struggled to break down Wycombe Wanderers for fucks sake, they were dreadful. They made a meal out of a game they should of put the bed a lot earlier.

      • LUFC-Srbski

        Good shout Jukiewicz would be from Boro. Scores regularly in this league – would fit in well.

    • LUFC-Srbski

      Makes you laugh at all the individuals who got on McDermott’s back early on under his appointment.

      I’ve said it to a few of my Leeds friends that game would have been a loss under Warnock. Certainly agree with the comments we looked more physically fit.

      We definitely need cover for Tom Lees. I was extremely worried when he went down injured. With Byram possibly out for a while I’d argue we need cover at right back as well or ideally a better replacement for the clueless Peltier.

      The only concern I have is WHY Hunt was signed. Perhaps we’ve yet to see the best of him – though he’s certainly not proving worth his wages and looks more toothless than a certain Steve Morrison. He does put a shift in which is good to see though!

      Here’s hoping we get a couple more in before the window closes.

  2. Craig Sweaton

    A clean sheet against a strong Leicester side is a point well earned. MOT

  3. Chareose

    I heard that when the team flies abroad Rodolph (I aint gettin on no plane foo!) Austin just walks through the sea and arrives at the beech in the other country to meet the squad………..

  4. Matthew

    If people need a short and abrupt verdict on the game, then simply put. We and Leicester nullified each other. Neither team was capable or possessed the quality to win the game. Although there were a lot of positives to take from the performance, Leicester were there for the taking, and had we had that little extra in our squad, we would of gone home with 3 points. No more, no less.

  5. El Van C

    Should Poleon be starting ahead of hunt, or is he not ready yet? Would he lose his impact factor? Would the bench look bare, Diouf is on his way back so that might help the bench options.

  6. NottsWhite

    I missed the home game against Brighton due to being on holiday therefore this was my first opportunity this season to see the team. On reflection we seem physically fitter which was demonstrated by all players pressing for the ball, we appeared to be more difficult to break down and we also aimed to retain the ball which continued with BMcD philosophy of last season. However despite the endeavours of Varney, Hunt and McCormack we appeared toothless in attack and never realy threathened until poleon and Smith were introduced. I shared the concern of TSS when Lees went down injured because our options looked thin.
    On a positive note I feel that this is the type of game we would have probably lost under Warnock’s regime (however I do acknowledge that we did achieve a draw under Warnock last year but this felt like a point earned rather than 2 points lost).

  7. Leodis in exile

    Based in Leicester, so listened on local radio. What was the incident with the steward that they were harping on about?

  8. spellz

    The game was as explained by the title of this article “dull” In the end I think we can be happy with the point I do feel we lacked pace and width as we already know and Ross was left at times to try and use pace he just don’t have.
    I think Luke Murphy had an absolute shocker every touch he took he seemed to lose the ball and was letting in Leicester’s attack pretty easily hope that was just an off day as he looked pretty lazy to me, on a positive note Austin was like a whole team out there, closing down everything getting stuck in at all times, if he was not there we may have come away with less than the point, strong performance on his return my god we need him.
    I thought Poleon should have been introduced earlier as he looked to use the pace we needed against the likes of Dyer and co, and instantly made an impact on that side. Overall we can be happy with the point a little more quality and attacking prowess could have seen us walk away with all three.

    M.O.T As always.

    • henrymouni

      I think BM went for a point, and got it, and showed the lads that we can do it.
      When you have The Skipper, Green and Varney with energy to burn, you have excellent support defenders.
      All good in the air.
      When the ball came into the box, from set pieces, we attacked in groups of two or three, to cover our main header.
      BM knows our defence needs help, and is desperate to get a big defender in soon.
      Noel Hunt looked off the pace, but worked hard.
      Maybe it was Neol who put the centre in for Pearce to miss an open goal?
      Bad miss!!
      It shows what you can do with good coaching, and team spirit!

      • spellz

        I totally agree Henry he did go for the point, I would have maybe took it before the game but by the end maybe we could have pushed for more which I think he did do with the introduction of Dom Poleon and Matt Smith all in all a good point and McD’s undefeated start to the season continues, HAHA.

  9. Tim Musgrove

    Love the Sparta reference, must be ironic given the appearance of the ‘average Leeds fan’. Gerrard Butler we are not.

      • henrymouni

        This is based on the new ‘Red Bull’ away kit!

        OK then.

      • henrymouni

        It’s all good fun Tim!

        We have to fill time in until Saturday comes around.

        Did you know? :-

        Homosexuality in the militaries of ancient Greece was regarded as contributing to morale. Although the primary example is the Sacred Band of Thebes, a unit said to have been formed of same-sex couples, the Spartan tradition of military heroism has also been explained in light of strong emotional bonds resulting from homosexual relationships. Various ancient Greek sources record incidents of courage in battle and interpret them as motivated by homoerotic bonds.

        Some Greek philosophers wrote on the subject of homosexuality in the military. In Plato’s Symposium, the interlocutor Phaedrus commented on the power of male sexual relationships to improve bravery in the military:

        … he would prefer to die many deaths: while as for leaving the one he loves in a lurch, or not succoring him in peril, no man is such a craven that the influence of Love cannot inspire him with a courage that makes him equal to the bravest born.

        And NOBODY chanted offensive remarks at them Tim!!!

      • henrymouni

        No indeed Tim!

        It is hardly surprising there were only 300 of them!!

        Ancient road sign:-

      • henrymouni

        Did you notice that during the game on Sky, they did not put the cameras on the Leeds fans once?
        You could hear them, but they usually show our excellent away fans:-

      • spellz

        Through the first half all I could here was our fans chanting non stop we all love Leeds, I think by the second half some of their throats were too sore to continue, lol PASSION.

      • henrymouni

        But did you see them spellz?
        I was waiting for the cameras to show them but it never happened.
        Really odd.

      • spellz

        No not once and we sounded like the home fans for crying out loud, was odd for sure.

  10. Max

    I thought: Austin and Green had good games; Varney tried hard; Hunt and Murphy somewhat indifferent, but I assume they’ll both come good; Lees and Pearce look nervous, though I think Pearce in particular gets a bad press; Peltier and to a slightly lesser extent Warnock were weak – a system with no wide midfielders and a flat back four can’t be the easiest for a full back, but Peltier in particular looked like he wished he was somewhere else. Kenny didn’t have much to do and just confirmed that he can stop shots but that his distribution isn’t great. Of the subs, Poleon at least looks threatening, and Smith will be more effective if we a) buy some wide players to knock the ball in to his head (and/or Byram returns) or b) we have a more lethal finisher next to him. Tonge wasn’t on long enough to make any impact; he now feels like cover for Murphy.

    Actually as I write this I don’t see why Leeds couldn’t play a wing back system themselves – Pearce/Peltier/Lees in the middle with Byram/White as wing backs, one less midfielder (probably Varney) and McCormack and Hunt up front. There’s not great cover in the squad for it (apart from having 4 left backs) but it feels like it would generate more chances than the current system.

  11. Paul Mcknockiter

    best i have seen em play in ages and esp after nurenburgh nazis defeat was shocked and v dissapointed with them in that match and thought here we go again butthey played v well on sun credit to bm


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