Leeds United played their final preseason match in Austria today against SD Eibar. While the results are not important in the long run for the, it is nonetheless concerning that the La Liga side was able to take an easy 3-0 lead at halftime in what we would like to call the “Saiz Derby” as Leeds and SD Eibar were in competition to land the coveted Huesca forward during the summer transfer window. Leeds put the game on a Facebook live stream that eventually got working this time, although it did take almost 15 minutes for the feed to show on Facebook. Either way, as many as 9,000 fans were able to watch the game live as it streamed from Jenbach, Austria.
Despite some good pressure early from Leeds, Eibar was able to easily put three goals past the Leeds backline. Two of the goals came from open play, with the third goal just a case of the Eibar forward getting past Pontus Jansson and putting the ball past Green with nothing the Leeds keeper could do about it.
The second goal was scored off of a corner kick, as the Eibar player did well to head the ball down to teammate who then just had to poke the ball into the net with no trouble. Again, Green had no chance to get to the ball before it bounded home.
FULL TIME: Leeds United 2 Eibar 4. Rather like the Facebook live, that got better as it went on. Plenty of positives in second half #lufc— Lee Sobot (@LeeSobotYEP) July 23, 2017
Leeds played much better in the second half. The team had a much better series in the second half. After Roofe had done well down the left hand channel to force a corner, Leeds was able to win the ball back after Eibar had done well to clear the ball after a rather acrobatic attempt on goal by Gianni Alioski. Ayling got a cross in to the box that Wood got his head on and it wasn’t dealt with very well by the Eibar keeper. Wood was able to take the ball on the back touchline as the Eibar defenders lost him expecting the ball to go out. Wood banked the ball off of the Eibar keeper from a tight angle to pull one back in the 63rd minute.
Different class second half alioski what a goal that was— Lufc talk (@LufcFan1919) July 23, 2017
Gianni Alioski did well to grab a 2nd goal as Eunan O’Kane sent a fine ball into the run of the Macedonian winger who beat his man to get a fierce shot on net that the Eibar keeper was unable to stop. The series started with a good pass from Ekuban who found O’Kane open before the Irishman sent sprung Alioski for the goal.
The game slowed considerably after the second Leeds goal, with Leeds able to put some more pressure on the La Liga side, but Eibar was able to force a corner that was directed to the near post in the 88th minute that Leeds did poorly to cover as Eibar put yet another set piece goal past the keeper.
While open play, especially in the second half seemed to favor Leeds United, Eibar was able to convert two corners into goals far too easily. While the midfield and the forwards were able to break for chances on net at times, the defense in general and the set piece defending left much to be desired.
Anyway, it’s just preseason and the goal is fitness and getting the team playing on the same page, as the results aren’t nearly as important as the process. It’s disappointing to surrender four goals in any match, but it is important to remember that Eibar placed 10th in La Liga last season.