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Stoke City 2-1 Leeds United: Potters down Championship leaders to give Nathan Jones first win

Sam Clucas.
Sam Clucas celebrates scoring Stoke's opener against Leeds

Marcelo Bielsa insisted Leeds' defeat at Stoke had nothing to do with their inability to watch the Potters train.

The Football Association and English Football League are investigating Bielsa's admission that he sent staff to observe a training session of not just previous opponents Derby but all of Leeds' Championship rivals this season.

Bielsa has since vowed to "respect the norms in the country where I work" - although Stoke boss Nathan Jones said he would happily have invited the Argentine to watch the Potters train.

But, despite seeing his Championship leaders beaten by goals from Sam Clucas and Joe Allen, the Leeds head coach insisted United's preparation had been unaffected.

"We can't say we ignored the features of the opponent," said Bielsa. "We just didn't take advantage of the possibilities we had. It was a game we could have won.

"Our goal is to have good balls to attack because we usually hurt the opponent. Today we had many opportunities to attack but we didn't hurt them.

"We lacked aggression and we didn't play deep enough to finish off the attacks."

Potters manager Jones, however, claimed the 'spygate' saga - including Bielsa's hour-long presentation to the media that showcased his meticulous planning - had played into Stoke's hands.

Having favoured a midfield diamond at former club Luton, Jones switched to a 3-5-2 formation in a successful attempt to nullify Bielsa's preparations.

"It's been well publicised Marcelo watched 26 Luton games and two Stoke games, so he's well drilled on what our usual formation is," said Jones, who tasted victory for the first time as Potters boss after beginning his reign with two defeats.

"So we thought we may have to give him a surprise because, if he's that well drilled on us, they've had plenty of time to work on it, so it'd be a difficult afternoon.

"We felt with the threats they've got and to give us the best chance to win the match we needed to be tactically right at it and I thought we were."

After a goalless first half, Clucas pounced on a weak Leeds clearance to fire the home side ahead and Allen slid in to seal the points from James McClean's cross before Ezgjan Alioski's stoppage-time consolation for United.

Pontus Jansson's sending-off completed a miserable day for Bielsa's Whites, who remain just a point ahead of second-placed Norwich after a third defeat in their past four league games.

Whether United's players have been affected by the ongoing controversy surrounding their manager only time will tell but they were well below-par against the Potters.

Leeds were unable to get 14-goal top scorer Kemar Roofe into the game and could not fashion a comeback once Clucas put Stoke ahead although Jansson's dismissal - pulling back Benik Afobe to earn a second yellow card after a first for dissent - did not help.

Line-ups

Stoke

  • 1Butland
  • 5Williams
  • 17Shawcross
  • 15Martins Indi
  • 2Bauer
  • 4Allen
  • 16AdamBooked at 58mins
  • 8Etebo
  • 22Clucas
  • 26CampbellSubstituted forMcCleanat 67'minutes
  • 9Afobe

Substitutes

  • 7Ince
  • 11McClean
  • 19Berahino
  • 25Crouch
  • 30Edwards
  • 32Federici
  • 38Woods

Leeds

  • 1Peacock-Farrell
  • 2Ayling
  • 18JanssonBooked at 76mins
  • 6Cooper
  • 10Alioski
  • 4ForshawBooked at 17mins
  • 47Clarke
  • 19HernándezBooked at 63mins
  • 43KlichSubstituted forStevensat 76'minutes
  • 22HarrisonSubstituted forRobertsat 61'minutes
  • 7Roofe

Substitutes

  • 11Roberts
  • 33Casilla
  • 40Davis
  • 46Shackleton
  • 48Stevens
  • 52Halme
  • 53Gotts
Referee:
Gavin Ward
Attendance:
28,586

Match Stats

Home TeamStokeAway TeamLeeds
Possession
Home29%
Away71%
Shots
Home12
Away17
Shots on Target
Home5
Away4
Corners
Home6
Away8
Fouls
Home11
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Stoke City 2, Leeds United 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Stoke City 2, Leeds United 1.

Goal!

Goal! Stoke City 2, Leeds United 1. Ezgjan Alioski (Leeds United) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom right corner following a corner.

Corner, Leeds United. Conceded by Ryan Shawcross.

Attempt blocked. Jack Clarke (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ezgjan Alioski.

Attempt blocked. Kemar Roofe (Leeds United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ezgjan Alioski.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Bruno Martins Indi (Stoke City) because of an injury.

Adam Forshaw (Leeds United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Benik Afobe (Stoke City).

Goal!

Goal! Stoke City 2, Leeds United 0. Joe Allen (Stoke City) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by James McClean with a cross.

Attempt missed. Ezgjan Alioski (Leeds United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Tyler Roberts.

Corner, Leeds United. Conceded by Joe Allen.

Attempt saved. Luke Ayling (Leeds United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Pablo Hernández with a cross.

Corner, Leeds United. Conceded by Ryan Shawcross.

Attempt saved. Tyler Roberts (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Kemar Roofe.

Adam Forshaw (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Peter Etebo (Stoke City).

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Pontus Jansson (Leeds United) for a bad foul.

Foul by Pontus Jansson (Leeds United).

Benik Afobe (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Leeds United. Jordan Stevens replaces Mateusz Klich.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Pontus Jansson.

Attempt blocked. James McClean (Stoke City) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Charlie Adam.

Attempt missed. Adam Forshaw (Leeds United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Mateusz Klich.

Attempt missed. Pontus Jansson (Leeds United) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Ezgjan Alioski with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Leeds United. Conceded by Sam Clucas.

Attempt missed. James McClean (Stoke City) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Benik Afobe.

Substitution

Substitution, Stoke City. James McClean replaces Tyrese Campbell.

Offside, Leeds United. Adam Forshaw tries a through ball, but Kemar Roofe is caught offside.

Attempt saved. Ashley Williams (Stoke City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Benik Afobe.

Attempt missed. Benik Afobe (Stoke City) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Charlie Adam with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Pontus Jansson.

Pontus Jansson (Leeds United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ashley Williams (Stoke City).

Booking

Pablo Hernández (Leeds United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Pablo Hernández (Leeds United).

Peter Etebo (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Leeds United. Tyler Roberts replaces Jack Harrison.

Attempt blocked. Kemar Roofe (Leeds United) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Luke Ayling with a cross.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Leeds28166647301754
2Norwich28158552361653
3Sheff Utd28155846291750
4West Brom27138655352047
5Middlesbrough281211531201147
6Derby2813784035546
7Bristol City2812883529644
8Hull28117104135640
9Swansea28117103732540
10Blackburn28101083741-440
11Birmingham2891274033739
12Nottm Forest2891273932739
13Aston Villa2891275145639
14QPR28116113439-539
15Stoke2891183335-238
16Sheff Wed2898113345-1235
17Brentford28810104339434
18Preston2889114345-233
19Millwall2878133444-1029
20Wigan2885152841-1329
21Rotherham28510132746-1925
22Reading2858153143-1223
23Bolton2757151840-2222
24Ipswich2839162248-2618
View full Championship table

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