Garry Monk is Tom Hanks.
Leeds United are on FIRE.
To continue the Cast Away metaphor: Monk’s club struggled at first (August), then slowly caught fire (September), and now are a blazing inferno.
On Monday afternoon against Rotherham at Elland Road, Leeds struggled in the first half, but then put three goals past the Millers in a fantastic second half, and won the match 3-0 thanks to goals from Kyle Bartley and Chris Wood.
Everything is awesome, and life is great.
A quick recap with videos of all three goals below:
The first half was abysmal, so if you want to nitpick, we can talk about that over the next week, but that’s not the mood now. Monk came out with a very attacking starting XI, with five attackers and only one in the defensive mid:
If @PhilHayYEP is right and Roofe is joining Wood up top, we’re likely to see this instead. 4-1-3-2 is a #very attacking #LUFC side. #MOT pic.twitter.com/cKIhkib2iC— Through It All #LUFC (@ThruItAllLUFC) January 2, 2017
It didn’t really work. Rotherham was able to boss the midfield with so many on attack, and the first half wasn’t any fun for anyone. It ended 0-0, but the Millers had the majority of the chances and likely should’ve scored twice.
At half, Monk subbed on Ronaldo Vieira for Hadi Sacko, going back to the favored 4-2-3-1 formation, and everything changed. Leeds wasted no time taking the game to Rotherham, and the goals started with a corner from Pablo Hernandez delivered to an oncoming Kyle Bartley.
Kyle Bartley GOAL v Rotherham #LUFC pic.twitter.com/Av7TwmrpCj— #WALMOT (@WALMOT333) January 2, 2017
Up 1-0 in the 47th, Leeds didn’t stop pushing for another goal, and Chris Wood connected for a second less than 20 minutes later.
Chris Wood GOAL v Rotherham #LUFC pic.twitter.com/B8XmWsl0sR— #WALMOT (@WALMOT333) January 2, 2017
Chris Wood is good, everyone. That’s not a goal anyone else on this club will score, and the conversation between Whelan and Pope immediately turned to if we’ll be able to KEEP him in January. That’s a mind-melting thought. Hold on to him and sign another striker, Cellino... please.
As if that goal didn’t end the match, thirteen minutes later in the 79th, Wood put in another to increase his total to 14 on the season (17 overall). IN JANUARY.
Chris Wood 2nd GOAL v Rotherham #LUFC pic.twitter.com/1YkNAaFdty— #WALMOT (@WALMOT333) January 2, 2017
We’ll have more on this match tomorrow morning, but Leeds gave us plenty to be excited about in the year’s first match. As if 2016 wasn’t exciting enough, three goals in the second half reassured everyone that Monk’s Leeds United means business in 2017.
The Whites stayed in 5th place after late goals from Reading and Huddersfield solidified their spots in the table, but United’s goal differential sits at +10 and we’re five points clear of 7th.
Enjoy the week, we’ve got an FA Cup match at Cambridge United next Monday, and we’ll have plenty more to come in the next few days on all things Leeds United (and now Leeds Ladies FC too!). MOT.