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Kiko Casilla errors again but Leeds battle back to earn draw at Brentford


Calamity keeper Kiko Casilla added another howler to his blooper highlights reel – but Leeds were spared more capital punishment.

Blundering Casillas gifted Brentford’s opener to Said Benrahma with a comical slip-up, but he was bailed out by skipper Liam Cooper’s equaliser.

And as manager Marcelo Bielsa perched on his blue-bucket throne at Griffin Park, he was entitled to feel satisfied with a belligerent display which was worth at least a point.

Leeds’ record in London is worse than the Northern Line – eight defeats and two draws in their last 10 visits.

And after four defeats in their previous five games, partisan refrains of ‘Leeds, Leeds are falling apart again’ are breaking out again in enemy heartlands to the tune of Joy Division’s Love Will Tear Us Apart.

Don’t fall into the trap of judging Bielsa on a horrid sequence of results or a goalkeeper who locates every passing banana skin with alarming regularity.

Brentford’s Said Benrahma scores their first goal

Form is temporary, class is permanent – and Leeds still knock the ball about with the decadence of a reclining seat in first class where most of the Championship is stuck in economy.

But they can ill-afford Edward Scissorhands in goal, or Steven Gerrard tribute acts slipping over in their own box in key promotion battles.

Apart from Christian Norgaard whipping a 20-yard shot just wide, Leeds had been comfortable for 25 minutes until Casilla’s latest howler.

There was no immediate danger – none whatsoever – when Cooper rolled a routine backpass along the six-yard area, only for Casilla to make an almighty hash of it, and Benrahma mopped up for his ninth goal of the season.

It was the Spanish Frank Spencer’s fourth clear mistake leading directly to a goal in two months. How many more can Bielsa take?

Liam Cooper of Leeds United celebrates after scoring

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To their eternal credit, Leeds summoned a vibrant response, David Raya tipping over a Pablo Hernandez before the Bees keeper’s dubious expression of solidarity with Casilla led to an equaliser.

Raya flapped at Jack Harrison’s corner, Cooper lunged in to bury the loose ball and parity was restored seven minutes before the break.

If possession is nine-tenths of the law, Bielsa had the law on his side for long periods.

But apart from Patrick Bamford sending a free header wastefully over the top, Leeds lacked the cutting edge to find the winner their polished approach play deserved.

Their mood was lifted by news of fellow promotion contenders Nottingham Forest dropping points unexpectedly.





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