Evans threatens Leeds United changes after shocking home start

Leeds United's Sol  Bamba argues with referee Tim Robinson. Picture : Jonathan GawthorpeLeeds United's Sol  Bamba argues with referee Tim Robinson. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe
Leeds United's Sol Bamba argues with referee Tim Robinson. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe
Leeds United boss Steve Evans has promised to make changes after seeing his side fail to win again at Elland Road when they took on lowly Blackburn Rovers.

The Whites paid the price for a shocking start as they conceded twice in the opening six minutes and went on to lose 2-0.

Evans’ first home game in charge quickly turned into a nightmare as Blackburn scored without a home player getting a proper touch on the ball, Craig Conway finding space in the box to fire past Marco Silvestri just 18 seconds into the game.

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When Jordan Rhodes then soon got his usual goal against Leeds they were left with an uphill task and barely looked like achieving the task.

Tom Adeyemi did hit the woodwork for the third time in two games and Mirco Antenucci missed a great chance when putting a volley wide in the first half, but United simply huffed and puffed in the second period and never looked like preventing a 12th successive home game without a win.

They have also lost their last four at Elland Road and Evans was an unhappy head coach at the end of the game, saying he needed to bring in a number of players to improve things.

He said: “If you take bravery away, the first thing you have to analyse is whether people are good enough.

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“It’s very evident whether you’re Steve Evans or Jose Mourinho that we need to get better players in. I think five or six to turn it round.

“The league table doesn’t lie. It’s a big job and we knew that already. The crowd haven’t seen a win for seven-and-a-half months and they’re on edge when they walk through the door. They’re entitled to be unhappy.

“If I’m honest, I thought the supporters were reserved. It might have been a bit more at 2-0 down in six minutes. We have no excuses. It wasn’t good enough.”

It could not have been a worse start for Evans as Blackburn attacked straight from the kick-off and Ben Marshall ‘s cross skimmed off the head of Sol Bamba straight to Conway in the box, who had time to pick his spot.

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Rhodes added to the misery with a smart finish after further poor defending allowed him to get hold of the ball in the box and it could have been three when Tom Lawrence charged forward through a big hole in United’s midfield.

Shellshocked Leeds finally settled and were unlucky not to score before half-time with Adeyemi’s header from a Luke Murphy free-kick.

Lewis Cook managed a shot on target from outside the box and Antenucci fluffed his great chance after being set up by Stuart Dallas, but the Whites’ play was disjointed and they were booed off at half-time.

It did not get any better in the second half and although Evans sent on Jordan Botaka and swapped the ineffective Chris Wood for Souleymane Doukara there was little sign of a big comeback.

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Blackburn settled for defensive stability and the occasional break and there was an air of inevitability about the game.

Cook made it two shots on target with a chip from the edge of the box, but Blackburn keeper Jason Steele had a quiet night, apart from getting away with a handball outside his box in the first half.

Substitute Alex Mowatt went close with a good strike late on, but it was too little too late on a night to forget.

(Conway 1, Rhodes 6)

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sky Bet Championship

Attendance: 19,666

Leeds: Silvestri, Byram, Bamba, Cooper, Berardi, Dallas, Adeyemi (Botaka 50), Murphy, Cook (Mowatt 85), Antenucci, Wood (Doukara 68).

Blackburn: Steele, Marshall, Duffy, Hanley (Kilgallon 75), Olsson, Taylor (O’Sullivan 89), Evans, Akpan, Conway, Lawrence (Delfouneso 84), Rhodes.

Referee: Tim Robinson