Leeds United and Arsenal played out a 0-0 draw at Elland Road on Sunday evening, with Marcelo Bielsa’s side left the most frustrated after hitting the woodwork on three occasions.Bernd Leno was in fantastic form between the sticks for the Gunners, as he was up to the task every time Leeds had a shot on target.
The first big chance of the match came in the 30th minute. Luke Ayling’s cross from the right was not properly dealt with by Gabriel, with the ball falling the way of Patrick Bamford. The Leeds No.9 attempted a left-footed volley that seemed destined for the bottom corner, but Leno got a strong hand to it.
The potentially game-changing moment arrived five minutes after half time. Nicolas Pepe had been engaged in a back and forth with Ezgjan Alioski, and the Arsenal forward ultimately lashed out by headbutting the Leeds left-back. The seriousness of the incident was not first recognised by referee Anthony Taylor, but the VAR alerted the official to what had happened. After checking the pitchside VAR monitor, Taylor gave Pepe his marching orders.
Leeds immediately looked to put more pressure on the 10-man Arsenal, and Stuart Dallas almost wheeled off in celebration in the 64th minute. He received the ball, got it out of his feet and then fired a left-footed shot towards the top left corner, but Leno got a strong right hand to it.
Rodrigo Moreno came on as a second-half substitute in the hope that it would change the game, with the Leeds player coming close to breaking the deadlock in the 76th minute. After some play down Leeds’ right-hand side, Rodrigo decided to test his luck from distance and was almost rewarded for it, with his shot going just over. Then, three minutes later, Rodrigo unleashed another shot, this time from the edge of the area, and it hit the crossbar before going behind for a goal kick.
It was clear that luck was not on Leeds’ side in the closing stages of the game, as they ended up hitting the woodwork a total of three times. After Rodrigo’s shot hit the bar, Bamford’s header came back out off the post in the 87th minute before Raphinha’s shot hit the post and went behind in the final minute of stoppage time.
This result means that Arsenal are now 11th in the table with 13 points from nine games, while Leeds find themselves 14th after having picked up 11, also from nine matches.