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Match Recap: Pontus Jansson scores a late header to earn Leeds a 1-1 draw with Brentford

Brentford had scored on a dubious penalty earlier in the second half

Leeds United v Brentford - Sky Bet Championship Photo by George Wood/Getty Images

Leeds United got a visit from Brentford, with the visitors from West London looking to try and stay in the playoff places in the table while Leeds were looking to stay on top of the league. Leeds went into the match level with both Middlesbrough and Sheffield United on points, but in the lead due to a superior goal difference.

Both sides seemed up for the match in the first half. Brentford had obviously not decided to come to Elland Road and try and muck around and play for a 0-0 draw, and the visitors put the ball on the ground and try to grab all three points. A number of teams have come into Elland Road with a point on their mind, but Brentford rather fancied their chances, and tried their best to get a win playing with the ball at their feet.

Brentford had gone four matches in the Championship without a win, but you wouldn’t know that from the way they played in the first half. Ollie Watkins hit the crossbar in the 29th minute after a good spell of play and Bailey Peacock-Farrell did well to block a shot from Neil Maupay on the rebound.

Leeds came close before halftime after they had done well to keep a bit of pressure on the Brentford goal. Samu Saiz was open in space in the box, but his shot went out wide. There were appeals for a corner kick, as it appeared that the shot took a deflection off of a Brentford defender’s boot as it was kicked, but the referee, for not the first time, didn’t seem to see what about 30,000 other people in the ground and on the pitch witnessed.

Leeds and Brentford went into halftime scoreless, with both teams looking to make some adjustments in order to open the goal scoring. Leeds looked to be on the back foot more than a few times, and this display of football from Brentford was perhaps the best that the crowd at Elland Road had seen from a visiting squad all season.

Kalvin Phillips came close in the 57th minute after Liam Cooper had put a header on frame from a corner kick, only for Luke Daniels, the Brentford keeper, to do well to get his hand in the way of the shot. Phillips was in the six-yard box and his shot looked almost certain to go in before the last-minute intervention.

Brentford was awarded a very soft penalty in the 62nd minute after Ollie Watkins’ soft shot went over Peacock-Farrell before Watkins went barreling into the Leeds keeper. Despite a penalty being given, it appeared on the replay that Watkins had started his fall well before coming into contact with Peacock-Farrell.

Brentford tried to hold onto their lead throughout the rest of the half, but Leeds were finally rewarded for their efforts in the 88th minute as Pontus Jansson headed home a good free-kick from Gjanni Alioski. Jansson got up, beat everyone else to the ball, and headed the ball home past a helpless Daniels.

Leeds would come close to a winner late on, but Lewis Baker’s header fell agonizingly wide of the Brentford post close to stoppage time, and Leeds were unable to turn their momentum from the late equalizer into a winning goal.

Probably should have been a draw, given the quality of the opposition and the match, but Leeds fans will still feel a little cheated by the draw because of the obvious dive by Watkins that was given a penalty. Leeds will now have to wait for the later results to see what position they’ll be in the table.