'Priceless three points' says pleased Leeds United boss Daniel Farke after win over 10-man Middlesbrough

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Daniel Farke was proud of the way his Leeds United team showed their attacking prowess against a Middlesbrough team he is tipping to finish in the top six in the Championship.

For the second time in three days the Whites found the net three times as their unbeaten home record was maintained and although the manager admitted Middlesbrough gave United problems he was happy with what he saw in a game of contrasting halves.

After five first half goals and thoughts of possible cricket scores developing the net was not found after the break with Leeds running out 3-2 winners.

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"It was a complicated game and for this league it was two really good sides, but I am really happy,” said Farke.

Crysencio Summerville headed Leeds United ahead against Middlesbrough.Crysencio Summerville headed Leeds United ahead against Middlesbrough.
Crysencio Summerville headed Leeds United ahead against Middlesbrough.

“I expected a tough game for us and couldn't be prouder of my boys.

“A third game in eight days against a very good side, Middlesbrough, I judge them as one of the main competitors for the top six positions.

“It was important to be brave, to press with intensity and perhaps even be a bit over emotional. It's always important you're fully committed off the ball. We created so many good situations and moments.

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"The goals were a sign of our will and how desperately greedy we were. Daniel James fully committed to win this (aerial) duel. The second goal more or less the same, Cree not known as the best header in this league but fully committed. It was top class in the first half.”

Joel Piroe made it 3-1 from the penalty spot.Joel Piroe made it 3-1 from the penalty spot.
Joel Piroe made it 3-1 from the penalty spot.

Farke continued: “The only problem was we were a little over-ridden with emotion in possession and when you give so many moments away and it's transition, transition, transition against a side who punish little mistakes and when you can't calm the game down then you can't have the energy to defending in detail in your own box.

"It was a wild game in the first half and probably every football fan must have enjoyed this game. I loved what we did, but as a manager I liked the second half when we calmed everything down and didn't play with any mistakes.

“We still had big chances and we had just one mistake when we gave a counter attack, but we were able to play it out with a monster block from Joe Rodon. This was the only situation I was a bit unhappy with.

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“For me a priceless three points against a very good opponent.”

It's a penalty as Georginio Rutter is brought down by Matt Clarke.It's a penalty as Georginio Rutter is brought down by Matt Clarke.
It's a penalty as Georginio Rutter is brought down by Matt Clarke.

Farke is delighted with Leeds' third position and form at they start a hectic December.

He added: "In the last six games we have 16 points. Back to back wins against really good passing sides, I am really pleased.

“Hopefully we get better game by game and even out of this first half we learn a lot, learn what is necessary on order to play on the front foot because there were many positive things.”

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Sam Byram on the run before supplying a cross for the opening Leeds United goal against Middlesbrough.Sam Byram on the run before supplying a cross for the opening Leeds United goal against Middlesbrough.
Sam Byram on the run before supplying a cross for the opening Leeds United goal against Middlesbrough.

It was another lightning start to an Elland Road game as it had been against Swansea in midweek with three goals in the first seven minutes this time.

Once again the Whites found themselves behind as Emmanuel Latte Lath made space by going round Archie Gray – who otherwise had a fine game –

before delivering a powerful shot that beat Illan Meslier at his near post.

But as they did a few nights earlier Leeds came up with a fantastic response.

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Dan James was sent racing through and saw his goalbound chip half-cleared by a defender, the ball came back out to Georginio Rutter and his shot was superbly saved by the legs of Seny Dieng.

Middlesbrough still failed to clear and when Sam Byram's cross looped up off a defender James came in at the far post to head home.

Two minutes later it was 2-1 from another surprising source with Crysencio Summerville now coming up with a far post header after Gray's cross had flicked off the head of Paddy McNair.

It could have been level again a minute as the frantic start continued with Latte Lath shooting over from seven yards.

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Latte Lath had another chance after getting in behind the home defence only for Meslier to come up with a one against one save.

Former Leeds midfielder Jonny Howson saw a shot deflected wide as Boro showed that they were the best visiting team to come to Elland Road so far this season.

United were also still dangerous and had another big chance when Summerville won the ball then advanced before playing in Rutter, who was unable to beat the keeper in a one-on-one.

Ethan Ampadu almost caught Dieng out after the keeper had charged out of his box, but his long range lob landed on top of the net.

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Rutter sent a shot from distance over before a penalty gave the Whites the chance to go 3-1 up.

Matt Clarke had only just come on to replace injured centre-half McNair when he found himself turned by Rutter on the edge of the box. After falling to the floor he grabbed at the home striker and brought him down to bring about United's second spot kick of the season.

This time they were successful with Piroe finding the back of the net for his eighth goal of the campaign, matching Summerville's number.

Middlesbrough were not done, however, and after Latte Lath wasted a big chance in heading over when found unmarked in the box he did make it 3-2 with a near post header from a corner.

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The second half could not match the first for thrills, although Clarke headed over for the visitors and Isiah Jones' shot was easily saved while Rutter could have put more distance between the teams when clean through only to see his shot superbly tipped wide by Dieng – without a corner being given!

Boro were reduced to 10 men as Anfernee Dijksteel was sent-off for a second yellow card offence, lunging in on a tackle on James after earlier being booked for a trip on Summerville who had been racing clear.

The game became more messy after this point, although Rutter missed two further chances to put the game to bed for Leeds.

The hosts were caught out on one break, but luck was on their side after Sammy Silvera's cross deflected off Pascal Struijk and hit the post with the follow-up shot by Morgan Rogers well blocked by Joe Rodon.

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The Whites had the final chance when Patrick Bamford's header from a corner was well saved and Piroe's follow-up went straight to Dieng.

They were happy to see out the closing minutes for a seventh straight home win to maintain their third place in the Championship.

(James 5, Summerville 7, Piroe 38, pen)

Middlesbrough 2

(Latte Lath 3, 45)

Sky Bet Championship

Attendance: 36,812

Leeds: Meslier; Gray, Rodon, Struijk, Byram; Ampadu, Kamara; James (Gnonto 82), Piroe (Gruev 90+3), Summerville (Anthony 90+3); Rutter (Bamford 82).

Middlesbrough: Dieng; Dijksteel (sent-off 62), Van den Berg, McNair (Clarke 36), Bangura (Engel 82); Barlaser, Howson; Jones, Crooks (Silvera 72), Rogers; Latte Lath (Coburn 72).

Referee: Darren England