Barnsley 0-2 Leeds: Samu Saiz and Ezgjan Alioski strike
By Simeon Gholam
Last Updated: 25/11/17 3:24pm
Samu Saiz and Ezgjan Alioski struck as Leeds won 2-0 at Barnsley in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday.
Thomas Christiansen's side were thumped 4-1 at Wolves in midweek, but bounced back with a convincing performance at Oakwell against their Yorkshire rivals.
Joe Williams returned from suspension for Barnsley as Paul Heckingbottom made five changes, while Felix Wiedwald returned in goal for Leeds. Up front, Caleb Ekuban made just his second start for the club after recovering from injury.
Saiz opened the scoring midway through the first half, and Alioski added a second just before the break to put the game beyond Barnsley.
Leeds dominated the game from the off at Oakwell and were worth the lead they took through Saiz after 23 minutes. The Spaniard picked up the ball from Alioski before charging towards goal and firing home a low effort from the edge of the area, which Barnsley goalkeeper Adam Davies probably should have done slightly better with.
Davies could do nothing with Leeds' second goal, though, as Alioski turned goalscorer in the fourth minute of first-half stoppage time, picking up the ball 20 yards out and curling a brilliant strike right into the bottom corner.
Paul Heckingbottom made a double Barnsley change at half-time in an attempt to get his side back into the game, throwing on Ike Ugbo and Gary Gardner for Harvey Barnes and George Moncur, but it did little to help the home side gain any real attacking momentum in the game.
Barnsley: Davies (5), Yiadom (6), MacDonald (5), Lindsay (5), Fryers (6), Potts (6), Williams (6), Moncur (5), Hammill (5), Bradshaw (5), Barnes (5)
Subs: Gardner (5), Ugbo (5), Hedges (n/a)
Leeds: Wiedwald (6), Ayling (6), Jansson (7), Cooper (7), Berardi (7), Phillips (7), O'Kane (6), Saiz (8), Hernandez (7), Alioski (7), Ekuban (6)
Subs: Shaughnessy (n/a), Grot (n/a), Roofe (n/a)
Man of the match: Samu Saiz
Man of the match
A classy performance in attacking midfield from the Spaniard Samu Saiz. Always a threat in the final third and did superbly to score the all-important first goal of the goal.
Paul Heckingbottom: "(There have not been) many games this season where we have been second best but we were today. There was difference in the qualities; their big-time players performed and we didn't. We were second best.
"It was one of those days where we weren't at our best. We lacked quality in both boxes."
Thomas Christiansen: "For me it is another three points, for the players it is important to build on the confidence. The team is back, we are hoping the results will improve now. I am very pleased for the players to take three points. We had two very difficult games against teams who have been in the Premier League (Middlesbrough and Wolves) and then a derby where we have not done well.
"It has been a very good week. That was our mission, to come here and try and take the three points, we did the good performance and this is was what we needed to try and be positive going forward. We made a good start because we did the things we had to do. We had to equalise their intensity and then our quality came through. The two goals were very important, to go to half-time with the score like that."
Barnsley are back in Sky Bet Championship action on Tuesday night at Reading, while Leeds host Aston Villa on Friday night