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Match Recap: Leeds United u23s 4-4 Blackburn Rovers u23s

The Whites play-out a thrilling encounter against Blackburn in York.

Fulham v Leeds United - Carabao Cup
Joe Gelhardt continued his rich vein of form for the under-23s.
Photo by Juan Gasparini/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The Leeds United under-23s were held to an incredible 4-4 draw by Blackburn Rovers at York City’s LNER Stadium.

The Whites opened the scoring on 23 minutes, and who else but Joe Gelhardt to score it? Drameh drove down the right before offloading to Gelhardt in a wide position. Gelhardt drifted inside, beating three defenders on his way to the penalty area before curling a low strike across the goal and into the bottom left corner.

Blackburn equalised just five minutes later as the goalkeeper launched a goal-kick straight down the middle, over the top for the striker, Burns. His touch was heavy, but Klaesson didn’t come out quickly enough, hesitating at the final moment. Burns took the opportunity, prodding the ball past the keeper.

Within ten minutes of the opening goal, Rovers turned the game on its head as Burns scored his second goal on 34 minutes. He received on the inside-left on the edge of the box, took it inside and jigged an opening through the legs of Drameh before sneaking the ball into the far corner.

Leeds equalised in the latter minutes of the first half with a wonderful team goal, starting with Gelhardt deep on the left side. A nice one-two with Allen opened up room for a beautifully weighted pass from Gelhardt in the middle through to Miller on the right channel. The new boy took a touch, drilled the ball into the perfect area at the back stick for Max Dean to tap in, finishing a brilliant Leeds move.

Moving into the second half and Gelhardt got Leeds off to the perfect start, barging his way back onto the ball when everyone else thought the attack was over. He turned onto his left before lashing the ball through the legs of the keeper to turn the game back into the favour of the home side.

The Whites established a two-goal advantage on the hour mark as Bate found Greenwood on the left channel. He chopped onto his right foot and lofted the ball toward the back post, with Charlie Allen meeting the cross with an excellent header back across the keeper, doubling the Leeds lead.

But Blackburn weren’t done there, as Burns won a big tackle on the left side, played a one-two with his teammate before shifting the ball inside to Harlock on the edge of the box. The youngster fired an excellent, floated strike across goal into the top-left corner to pile the pressure back on.

The team were holding on but were dealt a heartbreak in the final moments of the game. Sam Durrant hit a free-kick from the edge of the box straight at Klaesson, who spilled his save and Luke Brennan nodded into an open net to share the points between Leeds and Blackburn.