A beautiful, sunny, (dare I say it) Spring morning, made the journey to Elland Road a pleasant one for an early kick off against Millwall.
Warnock opted against changing the team for the third game running and with games quickly running out, we knew we had to get three points to be anywhere near keeping the hope of a Play Off position alive.
Millwall opened the game with the better of the possession, Woolford hit the side of the net with his shot on the second minute. 10 minutes later, Millwall went even closer when James Henry hit the post with a shot he really should have scored.
This may have been the kick up the backside we needed to pressure them as they did look a little shaky at the back, Luke Varney's header on the 16th minute was well wide. Tonge's ambitious 25 yard effort 2 minutes later was also wide but at least we were looking more positive.
Just as the game was beginning to get a little scrappy, Shane Lowry brought down Sam Byram inside the area and there was no hesitation by referee Mike Jones who immediately pointed to the spot on the 26th minute.
Ross McCormack stepped up to take the penalty, he hit it low and probably not as hard as he'd have liked. David Forde saved and Millwall had been let off.
John Marquis had a shot on goal on the 35th minute, testing Paddy Kenny who made a great save. Ross McCormack responded and found himself in a great position in the area, his first touch was poor though and he shot straight at the Forde who scooped up the ball with ease.
The referee brought an end to the first half and both sides went in to the dressing rooms without a goal. The game hadn't been without it's chances though and I was left thinking I was none the wiser as to who was going to win. It could still go either way.
We started the second half much more positively than we had the first.
Ross McCormack had a go at goal on the 56th minute but it was too high and never pressured Forde.
Tonge was working hard and had two opportunities in as many minutes. Another effort of his from long range went well wide but David Forde was forced to save the second shot, though we were having the chances, we weren't yet scoring, we could only hope this wasn't going to come back and haunt us like we know it all so often can.
Kenny Jacket changed his side on the 66th minute taking Benik Afobe and John Marquis off, replacing them with Nathan Tyson and ex Leeds United Loanee - Andy Keogh who received a good reception on his return to Elland Road. The two made an almost immediate impact as the visitors began to look a lot more sure up front.
Another penalty was awarded to The Whites on the 70th minute of play when Alan Dunne fouled Ross McCormack in the area. This time, January signing, Stephen Warnock grabbed the ball and took it to the spot, he took a run up and confidently hit the back of the net. 1 - 0.
Now, pace and Michael Tonge aren't usually used together in the same sentence but on the 73rd minute he ran like we've never seen him run before, his burst of pace was met with encouragement from the Leeds fans but his 'neck propelled' run did cause amusement, hashtag GoOnTongey, ha ha!!
In the closing stages of the game, Steven Warnock tackled James Henry, he was later stretchered off the field of play, he did return to the game though shortly after the stoppage.
Play was again stopped inside the five minutes of added time as Luke Varney was caught unintentionally by Warnock, it didn't look good for Varney as he writhed around in agony. After receiving treatment for a few minutes, he also left the field in a stretcher and was replaced by Jason Pearce.
The whistle blew for full time & an important 3 points was confirmed.
My man of the match as to be Stephen Warnock, worked so hard all match and took his penalty well.
Leicester City away at the King Power Stadium next match, midweek, lets hope we can get another 3 points, though they will be trying to get over a loss to Ipswich and trying to keep hold of their Play Off position.
MOT xx <3 xx