Leeds United derserved derby win over Millers, insists Bielsa

Kemar Roofe celebrates his goal against Rotherham. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Kemar Roofe celebrates his goal against Rotherham. Picture: Bruce Rollinson

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa was adamant his side deserved their 2-0 Yorkshire derby win over Rotherham United.

But the Argentinian head coach, who became the club’s first ever manager to win his opening four matches, played down the Whites’ fine start to the new Championship season and says there is still room for improvement.

Rotherham could have led at half-time at Elland Road if Jon Taylor’s shot had not rattled the inside of the left upright and keeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell had not produced a fine point-blank block to thwart winger Ryan Williams.

But goals from Luke Ayling and leading scorer Kemar Roofe did the damage as Bielsa’s team made it three successive league victories and four in all competitions.

And probably more importantly for the Whites fans they were able to go home happy after once again securing welcome bragging rivals over their Yorkshire rivals.

“Winning three games in a row is good for us,” said Bielsa, speaking with the aid of a translator.

“You have to respect your opponent, but I think we deserved to win the game.

“The problems we had were in the first half were more linked to our own goal rather than focusing on our defensive actions. We have been better in the first half, but we built too much from the back.

“In the second half it was looking like what happened in the first half, but the opponent didn’t have any offensive action. Our opponents were tired so we had more space to attack.

“Unlike our first two league games, today was more of a Championship game. Rotherham had three clear moments where they could have scored a goal, which was because of the mistakes we made.”

Leeds have now won their last five meetings with Rotherham and, on this early form, they already look one of the teams to beat this season.

There was a personal milestone for Ayling who scored his first Leeds goal and, amazingly, also his first goal since April 2015.

And for the in-form Roofe, another strike continued a fine start to the season, his third goal in four games.