Town chief would have been 'mortified' if Luton succumbed to stoppage time Helder Costa header at Elland Road

Leeds attacker puts glorious late chance off target

By Mike Simmonds
Wednesday, 1st July 2020, 2:09 pm
Updated Wednesday, 1st July 2020, 2:10 pm
James Collins challenges for possession at Leeds on Tuesday night
James Collins challenges for possession at Leeds on Tuesday night

Hatters chief Nathan Jones admitted he would have been ‘mortified’ if Leeds United had nicked a stoppage time winner through on-loan Wolves attacker Helder Costa last night.

With the scores 1-1 and the game almost up, the Whites created one last chance, a gilt-edged one at that too, Ezgjan Alioski crossing from the left for the unmarked Portuguese international to appear destined to score.

However, the £13m man failed to bury his header, in fact not even testing keeper Simon Sluga, glancing well wide of the target under pressure from Dan Potts.

Jones said: "They shouldn't score from a cross as we have five defenders there, so one, we should get out there early and stop the cross, two, we've got three center halves and a full back in there.

"I would have been mortified to concede from that as that's just switching off.

"They didn't switch off, but when you're having to defend and having to work so hard, you've just had a massive journey into God's country (Wales) at the weekend, then you have to come home and then you have to train and then you have to travel up here, it's a big, big ask for them.

"So I'm delighted, I'll take the point and I'll move on."

Town goalscorer Harry Cornick revealed his heart was in his mouth when the cross reached Costa, saying: "I was nervous when that went in, but Pottsy has done well at the back stick to try and put him off.

"They had their chances which some of them they didn't take, we made some great saves and great blocks from our players, so I'm delighted.

"Conceding one against Leeds is not the worst as they have so many chances and get so many balls in the box, so 1-1 is probably a great result in the end."

Although Town only had two shots on target, compared to the hosts' nine, with Leeds also having 76 per cent of the ball, Jones felt his side deserved their point for what was a hugely disciplined and impressive tactical display.

He added: "They take so many chances, they play with such a structure and an energy and with a relentlessness that it’s very difficult.

"If you give them space, they kill you, they murder you, and that’s what you can’t do, so we knew we’d have to defend in a certain way.

"I’ve done the same against them and won two, drawn one and lost one against them, so if you do deny them that space you’ve got a chance of being solid, because if you don’t they carve you open.

"I thought the shape worked, I thought tactically we were good, we defended well and they listened to the gameplan and that’s a big, big thing because they’re believing in what we’re saying to them, they’re driving that home and we looked very, very solid.

"Now its about turning that solidity into a little bit more fluency and then scoring more as well."