Red­fearn boosts job prospects

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Robin Wright

JIMMY Floyd Has­sel­baink and Rob­bie Fowler may be the star names look­ing to take charge at El­land Road, but care­taker boss Neil Red­fearn reck­ons he has got Leeds tick­ing again.

Red­fearn, pro­moted to his in­terim role from the club’s academy, saw his side earn a pos­i­tive point away to Birm­ing­ham City as Alex Mowatt can­celled out Wes Thomas’ first-half ef­fort.

Mowatt is a player Red­fearn has pushed up to the first team dur­ing his spell in charge, ev­i­dence of his po­ten­tial in the job.

And Red­fearn be­lieves the pass­ing style adopted in the per­for­mance at St An­drew’s will lay the foun­da­tions for an up­turn in for­tunes.

“I thought we were ex­cel­lent in the sec­ond half but for the en­tire 90 min­utes we tried to pass the ball and get it down and play it,” he said.

“We lacked a bit in the first half and didn’t re­ally look like scor­ing so that was the mes­sage at half-time. We’ve got to be brave to score and run off the ball and get into the box and get shots off.

“But after the sec­ond half we were ex­cel­lent and de­served at least a point.

“Alex (Mowatt) is a brave boy and he gets on the ball and is pre­pared to have it. And he can play in tight ar­eas.

“I thought some of his pass­ing out of trou­ble was dif­fer­ent class. I’ve told him he has to be­lieve that is the way for­ward.

“There were times in the game where we had a lot of pos­ses­sion and flat­tened it, which was per­fect for an away per­for­mance.

“We could have nicked it as we had two or three good chances but they may have had a penalty, so a point was a good re­sult.”

Hosts Birm­ing­ham were dom­i­nant dur­ing the first half with Brek Shea test­ing Marco Sil­vestri early on and Giuseppe Bel­lusci was per­haps for­tu­nate not to score in his own net.

They de­servedly went ahead through Thomas, the striker killing a sharp pass at his feet be­fore turn­ing inside to shoot high past Sil­vestri on 37 min­utes.

Leeds re­sponded after the break, en­joy­ing more of the pos­ses­sion, and fi­nally got their re­ward as Mowatt cap­i­talised on a poor clear­ance to level things up on 76 min­utes.

Chances for sub­sti­tute Rodolph Austin and Mowatt fol­lowed, with the lat­ter see­ing an ef­fort cleared off the line.

Birm­ing­ham, mean­while, were un­lucky not to be awarded a penalty as De­marai Gray was fouled – leav­ing man­ager Lee Clark frus­trated.

“I think there were lots of pos­i­tives and we have been pun­ished for an in­di­vid­ual er­ror, un­for­tu­nately,” said Clark.

“We move for­ward again, there were a lot of pos­i­tives and we are a lit­tle frus­trated that we didn’t leave with all three points.

“It was a great fin­ish from Wes (Thomas) and it had been a tough day for him. He nearly didn’t play be­cause his wife had gone into labour but was sent home.

“He made him­self avail­able straight away and went straight away after the game and hope­fully he will have some­thing to cel­e­brate.

“We should have had a penalty and our penalty taker is ruth­less from the spot, so I am a lit­tle frus­trated. The boy doesn’t dive, I’ve seen him in train­ing and their de­fender has left his leg there.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Images

THAT’S MOW TO DO IT: El­land Road youth team grad­u­ate Alex Mowatt scores Leeds’ equaliser

IN FRONT: Wes Thomas cel­e­brates

his goal

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.