Leeds United's poor away run continues at Aston Villa
Leeds United's travelling fans suffered more misery as their side failed to score in going down to another defeat in front of the Sky Cameras at Aston Villa.
Yet to win away in 2018, yet to win away under head coach Paul Heckingbottom and yet to win on TV this year - nothing changed and rarely looked like it would.
Leeds had a bit of a go early in the second half and only lost 1-0, but even their most ardent supporters would struggle to win an argument that they were worthy of winning.
There were mitigating circumstances with 10 first teamers missing for the travel to the Midlands and a scratch defence with Paudie O’Connor in his third game and Tom Pearce in only his second.
They looked in trouble at the back in the opening minute, but Lewis Grabban dragged his angled shot wide.
In a bright start Leeds also attacked with Ezgjan Alioski cutting in from his right wing position and firing in a shot that had to be tipped over by home keeper Sam Johnstone.
At the other end former Leeds winger Robert Snodgrass saw his bending shot from outside the box beaten away by Whites keeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell.
United were giving as good as they got at this stage and Pablo Hernandez saw his shot deflected to become a comfortable save for Johnstone.
Caleb Ekuban produced a good turn on the edge of the box and was brought down by Mile Jedinak, but no free-kick was forthcoming.
Villa then got on top, however, and after Jack Grealish hit a deflected shot wide they went ahead after Grealish’s cross was met by Grabban, who headed home after getting the better of Matthew Pennington.
As usual one goal could have been two soon after as Grealish’s strike from range was saved by Peacock-Farrell and Josh Onomah shot wide after coming up with a nice turn on the edge of the box.
Villa had claims for a penalty waved away after O’Connor appeared to pull back Jonathan Kodjia and it remained 1-0 to half-time.
Leeds made a marked improvement at the start of the second half after Samuel Saiz was brought on for Ekuban.
Pablo Hernandez volleyed over from 20 yards, Kalvin Phillips saw his volley cleared off the line and Pearce’s flick from a low corner went wide - all in the space of four minutes.
Ronaldo Vieira shot over from the edge of the box and Alioski ran at a back pedalling defence, but shot over when other players were better placed.
However, the big effort fizzled out and Leeds needed two good saves from Peacock-Farrell to stay in the game as he denied Grabban and Kodjia from close range.
Kemar Roofe, who was largely anonymous, did send a weak header wide from a Stuart Dallas cross, but that was the last effort by a United team who had little left in the closing 25 minutes.
Villa settled for running the game down, although substitute Albert Adomah forced Peacock-Farrell into another save with an angled shot.
It was all too familiar and Villa had their first win over Leeds since 2004.
Aston Villa 1
Leeds United 0
Friday, April 13, 2018
Sky Bet Championship
Aston Villa: Johnstone, Elmohamady, Chester, Jedinak, Taylor, Whelan, Snodgrass, Onomah (Samba 85), Grealish, Grabban (Hogan 78), Kodjia (Adomah 67).
Leeds: Peacock-Farrell, Dallas, Pennington, O’Connor, Pearce, Phillips, Vieira, Alioski (Grot 66), Roofe (Lasogga 78), Hernandez, Ekuban (Saiz 45).
Referee: Tony Harrington.