|Leeds United 5 v 1 Newport County|
Tuesday, 22nd August 2017 Kick-off 19:45
Match Report: Leeds United 5-1 Newport County - Stellar Roofe the catalyst for second round victory
Wednesday, 23rd Aug 2017 13:29 by @LucasMonk_
On a mild summer’ evening at Elland Road on Tuesday, a heavily rotated Leeds United saw off the brave challenge of League Two outfit Newport County in an eventual 5-1 triumph.
The highlight of this match was, without question, a celestial hat-trick on the part of Kemar Roofe, as Leeds United secured their place in Thursday’s third round draw with a 5-1 victory over Newport County - though the Exiles posed far more problems to the hosts than many had expected them to.
Veteran goalkeeper Rob Green inadvertently gifted Michael Flynn’s team the lead in the 33rd minute of the match, when the former England shot-stopper made a calamitous error following a long distance strike by Joss Labadie.
Leeds restored parity shortly before half-time, with Kemar Roofe firing home from close range after County failed to clear their lines in consequence of a United corner.
After the interval, Leeds, with great haste, raced into the lead. Roofe scored his second of the match with a powerful effort on the half-volley in the 49th minute, before adding a resplendent third with an excellent bicycle-kick in the 65th minute to ensure that he would take home the match ball.
Samu Sáiz then replaced Eoghan Stokes a moment later, and added a fourth for the home side in the match’s 78th minute. The Spaniard, who netted United’s opening goal away to Sunderland recently, rifled home from the verge of the penalty area after a poor clearance from an opposing defender.
Ronaldo Vieira would then add further gloss to the scoreline by netting only the second goal of his professional career with just one minute of normal time remaining; the 19-year-old’s low effort into the far corner - following a set-piece - eluded the desperate dive of Newport ‘keeper Joe Day.
In truth, the scoreline perhaps flattered United with the visitors producing a mettlesome display - but Leeds’ ruthless efficiency in front of goal proved decisive. Newport created many a good opportunity, and if not for profligate finishing on their part the match could have had a radically different outcome.
Leeds United (4-2-3-1) - Green; Anita (Cooper 60’), Shaughnessy, Ayling, Borthwick-Jackson; Klich, Vieira; Dallas, Stokes (Sáiz 66’), Gomes; Roofe (Alioski 75’).
Unused Substitutes: Peacock-Farrell, O’Connor, Phillips, Wilks.
Newport County (4-4-2) - Day; Demetriou, White, O’Brien, Pipe; Rigg (Tozer 71’), Labadie, Dolan, Willmott; McCoulsky (Nouble 54’), Reynolds (Quigley 66’).
Unused Substitutes: Bittner, Butler, Cole, Bennett.
Half-Time: Leeds United 1-1 Newport County - Labadie (33’), Roofe (44’).
Full-Time: Leeds United 5-1 Newport County - Labadie (33’), Roofe (44’, 49’, 65’), Sáiz (78’), Vieira (89’).
Match Statistics (Leeds / Newport)
Possession: 58% / 42%
Attempts: 22 / 15
On Target: 12 / 8
Corners: 4 / 3
Fouls: 12 / 12
Man of the Match: Kemar Roofe (Leeds).
In the absence of a natural centre-forward, Kemar Roofe spearheaded United’s attacking vanguard and with some efficiency too. A wondrous hat-trick on the part of the former Oxford talisman proved instrumental as Leeds secured their place in the third round.
Booked: Cooper, Klich, Vieira, Gomes, Dallas (Leeds). O’Brien, Dolan, Labadie, Quigley (Newport).
Venue: Elland Road (37,890).
Attendance: 17,098 (approximately 45% of capacity).
Referee: Ross Joyce (Teesside).
The manner of Leeds’ victory was not as imperious as the scoreline indicates; Newport produced a dogged performance and were perhaps unfortunate not to have led at the break.
In the end, though, United’s superior quality in the final third told. Roofe’s second and third goals set Leeds on their way and his stellar display was the catalyst for the win.
Focus now shifts to the third round draw, before Thomas Christiansen and his charges disembark for the City Ground at the weekend to do battle with Nottingham Forest.
Photo: Action Images
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