After faltering over Easter, Leeds United needed a reaction against Aston Villa on Sunday to help avoid slipping into a slump ahead of the Championship play-offs.
Villa, on a run of ten wins in a row, were perhaps the worst possible opponents but Leeds approached the match with fire in their belly and earned a 1-1 draw.
The nature of the result was of course very contentious because of the drama surrounding Mateusz Klich’s opening goal and Marcelo Bielsa’s subsequent decision to allow Villa to equalise directly after.
But when all that has died down, perhaps the most important element of the afternoon for Leeds was the way they got back on track and proved they’re still fighting hard for promotion.
Klich told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “We beat them away and we were the better team [on Sunday]. There’s a long way to go but I hope we can do it and if we play like this then I’m very convinced we can.”
Leeds fans may have been down in the dumps after their Easter collapse but Sunday’s match was the perfect one to restore confidence and get the spark that will be needed in the promotion push back again.
The supporters certainly seem to think so, as they took to Twitter to hail Klich’s comments and throw their weight behind the team once more…
We needed that to bring everyone back together. I, amongst many other fans I’m sure, struggled to get excited before the game but by the time the final whistle came the 🔥 was well and truly stoked again! The team look United again and the fans seemed united again 💪🏽
— Dom (@Dom_Fletch89) April 30, 2019
Feeling more confident about the plays offs after that 👏🏻
— Louisa Wade (@LouisaWade_) April 30, 2019
Feel more confident going into playoffs after that performance. And the aggro & fall out is just what we needed to bring everyone back together! We go again Leeds #mot Just need to go Ipswich, find our scoring boots & build some confidence before the biggest 2/3 games of season
— damien matthewman (@Damien_J_M) April 30, 2019
Thought second half was far better than it has been, just need to find out scoring boots
— Tony Walker (@tonywalks_1965) April 30, 2019
We play well against these sort of teams which bodes well for the playoffs . Even the losses to Norwich and Sheff Utd, Leeds put in performances and were unlucky to lose.
Only bad game against a top six team was away at West Brom.
— Brando Cerati (@ElBrando18) April 30, 2019
👌 finish from @Cli5hy. Oc he'd have had someone chasing if they hadn't stopped, but defence were still trying. Didn't deserve pity goal since they undermined ref by not playing to whistle & Kodija wasn't even injured – he dived, as they did all game, cos they know they're worse.
— Sean Dyche (@SeanDyche8) April 30, 2019
Let's hope so. It is high time this squad stopped the talk and did the walk.
— Paul Hirst (@PaulHir64872856) April 30, 2019
— Andy Dent 💙💛 (@Thedentsmaster) April 30, 2019
Yep, onto the Playoffs! 🙏🏼
— Matt. (@MattJLufc) April 30, 2019