MX23RW : Tuesday, December 11 05:11:42
Sep 22, 2018 at 3pm UK at ​Elland Road (Leeds, West Yorkshire)
Attendance: 34,800
LeedsLeeds United
1-2
BirminghamBirmingham City
Alioski (85')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Adams (8', 29')

Result: Monk returns to haunt Leeds as Bielsa's men lose unbeaten start

Che Adams scored twice in the first half for Birmingham.

Leeds' unbeaten start to the Championship season came to a sudden halt as former United boss Garry Monk inspired struggling Birmingham to a 2-1 victory at Elland Road.

The 39-year-old, who spent the 2016/17 season in charge of the Whites, had endured a miserable return to his old club last term, suffering a 2-1 defeat as Middlesbrough manager.

But things improved for Monk second time around as Che Adams' brace secured Blues their first win of the campaign at the ninth attempt.

Gjanni Alioski pulled a goal back for leaders Leeds late on, but, despite a frantic finish, the visitors held on.

The loss for United was head coach Marcelo Bielsa's first in the league and came as a surprise to the sell-out crowd given the way that Preston were cast aside 3-0 in midweek.

Monk's game plan worked perfectly from the off and, despite only scoring two goals away from home this campaign, they doubled that tally in the opening half hour.

Adams was offered time and space outside the area and his curling effort somehow wrong footed Bailey Peacock-Farrell, comfortably beating the static goalkeeper, in the eighth minute.

Peacock-Farrell could then do nothing to stop Adams' second as the former Sheffield United forward's low shot trickled along the ground and in off a post.

Leeds finally started to stir and a ruthless Bielsa attempted to shake things up in the 34th minute, hauling below-par midfielder Kalvin Phillips off for Stuart Dallas.

Yet the warning signs were still there for the Whites as Jota's cross was deflected over the top by Liam Cooper and, from the resulting corner, Jacques Maghoma's fizzed drive was cleared close to the line.

Alioski wasted the hosts' best chance of the opening half, firing over with his weaker right foot from a decent position in the area.

Leeds still appeared capable of carving the visitors open, with Tyler Roberts having a shot blocked and substitute Adam Forshaw volleying straight at Lee Camp after the interval.

One of Bielsa's coaching staff was then shown a yellow card for complaining about Birmingham's continuous attempts to slow the game down.

And Leeds' frustrations continued as their usual slick passing in the final third let them down on several occasions.

The visitors were keen to sit on their lead and Leeds had to search hard for a breakthrough, the impressive Dallas having a shot deflected wide following substitute Ryan Edmondson's knockdown.

But Leeds finally got their breakthrough with five minutes remaining as Alioski controlled a long pass and drilled a low shot past Camp.

The Macedonian winger and Dallas were then both denied by Camp, the latter courtesy of a brilliant diving stop, as Birmingham held on.

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Birmingham City manager Garry Monk pictured on July 28, 2018
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Norwich CityNorwich21134438241443
2Leeds UnitedLeeds21126335181742
3Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd21114634241037
4Derby CountyDerby2111463124737
5West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom21106544301436
6Middlesbrough219932314936
7Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest21810332221034
8Aston Villa218854132932
9Birmingham CityBirmingham217953025530
10Stoke CityStoke217952725230
11Blackburn RoversBlackburn217952731-430
12Swansea CitySwansea218582523229
13Bristol City218582524129
14Queens Park RangersQPR218492531-628
15Preston North EndPreston216783235-325
16Wigan AthleticWigan2174102329-625
17Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds216692738-1124
18Brentford215793332122
19Hull City2156102130-921
20Rotherham UnitedRotherham214982132-1121
21Millwall2147102635-919
22Reading2146112634-818
23Bolton WanderersBolton2146111529-1418
24Ipswich TownIpswich2118121737-2011

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