As Leeds went 2-0 down yesterday a familiar feeling washed over me, we were going to lose and lose badly. A first half that was about as entertaining as the Ashes provided little entertainment. It was a bit like a game from the Warnock era, poor finishing and a lot of hoofing. Watford on the counter were scarily fast, or maybe we were just really slow. Either way it worked for them and if not for a great half time team talk from McDermott we would have lost that game.
The second half was probably the best performance from Leeds this season. Loads of chances created and some were actually finished this time. Even Danny Pugh scored… After that goals from Matt Smith and Ross McCormack followed, putting us 3-2 in front only for Watford to equalise late on after an error from Kenny.
This brings us on to the main point of this article. It could have been even worse for Leeds as Watford had a chance in the last-minute, only for Marius Zaliukas to put in this massive block. I could watch it all day. Zaliukas
So when people were asking whether it was a point gained or two points dropped, definitely a point gained.
For me Zaliukas is the best signing McDermott has made, he is a rolls-royce. He has also improved the defenders around him. Jason Pearce and Tom Lees especially have benefited from having such a calming influence in the defensive line. Even Danny Pugh seems to have raised his game, keeping Stephen Warnock out of the team. It is worth reminding that Zaliukas was signed on a free, I don’t think we could have asked for much better. It makes you wonder why he had no club in the first place? Leeds have finally found a proper centre back, the best we’ve had in years.
Overall I am very happy with how Leeds are playing at the moment, Luke Murphy also had his best game for the club yesterday in my opinion. Mowatt keeps getting better in every game and Ross is just doing his thing. I also think Matt Smith has finally made some people eat their words. Even if he doesn’t always score he works the defenders really hard and most of them just cannot handle him. He’s got 6 goals for the season already so he could easily end up with 12+ which would be a great return. Our next two games are Doncaster away and Barnsley at home and we should be aiming for six points if we want to be in the Playoffs. As long as we’ve got Zaliukas playing at the back and McCormack upfront I am sure we can win them both.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Agree with most of what you say, especially Murphy as I don’t think he’s been getting the credit he deserves. However, despite Smith scoring I don’t rate him at all. I’ve seen him play a few times and he’s basically a non-league Peter Crouch. His size and “style” give Leeds more problems than the opposition as nearly every time the ball goes near him he either misses it completely or gives away a foul. How that goal at Huddersfield stood is beyond me, as despite his size he still had to use a Town defender’s shoulders to lever himself up!

    • Fantastic you might just be right if we had got him in the summer am sure he would have been. Captain. No disrespect to Roody who I think is doing a fantastic job.-

  2. […] Marius Zaliukas was for me, man of the match. He was class at centre-half; commanding, not afraid to get stuck in, and even composed when he had possession of the ball – something we’ve not had for a long, long time – completing 33 of his 39 attempted passes (85% completion rate). The former Hearts captain, whose contract with Leeds runs until the Summer, made 4 interceptions. He also made 11 clearances and blocked 1 shot. A shot that would have given Watford all 3 points – see below.What a performance from the Lithuanian. […]

  3. I tweeted weeks ago how good he was, i seen alot of him at Hearts and he is very good. And he scores a few goals i am sure he will at Leeds i was delighted he signed for us. As i said when i new he was training with us i said we needed to sign him. I said him and Rudy would make a great pair for us at the back and they could play in the prem were alot of the others are not good enough.!

  4. Zaliukas. At long last, a proper CB aat the heart of our defence. Not quite, IMHO, the finished article, but very, very close. All the basic ingredients are there. A rough, tough competitor, with commanding presence,who sees threats early and responds decisively. I’ve been particularly impressed though, by his composure in possession, playing the ball to another white shirt instead of just booting it into outer space. Also, his confidence, as a relative newcomer, in stepping forward to organise back line colleagues whenever the pressure’s on. Definitely think he deserves a better contract to tie him down before one of the really big boys come sniffing round. MOT .

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