Quaner strikes late to give Town a winning end to the season
A disappointing 2018/19 season for Town came to an end with an entertaining 90 minutes at Portman Road and Collin Quaner grabbing a late winner.
Flynn Downes gave Town the lead with his first goal for the Club but Leeds were level at the break through Mateusz Klich.
Andre Dozzell put Blues back in front with a slick finish early in the second-half. Leeds equalised again through Stuart Dallas and then had a gilt-edged chance to go ahead when Luke Chambers was sent-off for the first time in his Town career after fouling Kemar Roofe in the box.
Roofe slipped as he took the penalty and scuffed his shot over before Quaner took centre stage on 90 minutes and found a winner for Blues.
Bart Bialkowski returned to the side, with Collin Quaner back to lead the line. Ellis Harrison was included on the bench after a lengthy period out with a back problem.
Bialkowski was quickly off his line to smother the ball as Klich tried to get in, Town responding with Quaner making in-roads down the right but Liam Cooper was alert to the threat, then Klich fired wide from 25 yards.
Roofe pulled his shot wide after Dallas released him down the left, Dallas off target with a right footer from the edge of the box, Bialkowski at the feet of Roofe as Leeds pressed for an opener.
Alan Judge and Quaner combined to set up Downes in a great position after Leeds had lost possession deep in their own half, the midfielder denied by Pontus Jansson’s excellent challenge.
Adam Forshaw forced Bialkowski into a save after a Leeds counter, the ball cannoning back off Pablo Hernandez to safety, while at the other end Quaner broke clear only to be brought down by Kiko Casilla’s challenge 35 yards out but from the free-kick Downes hooked the ball into the net on the half hour mark to give Town the lead.
Toto Nsiala did superbly to block Roofe’s effort from eight yards, the defender doing equally well seconds later to keep out Cooper, Klich firing well over from the edge of the box.
Leeds’ equaliser on 44 minutes was a moment of quality, Forshaw releasing Luke Ayling and from his cross, Klich finished first time superbly.
Town were back in front two minutes into the second-half though and again it was a well worked goal, finished in style from Dozzell after Quaner set him free on the right.
Bialkowski saved comfortably from Hernandez before both teams made a first change with Jack Clarke replacing Forshaw and Kayden Jackson on for the injured Downes.
Kalvin Phillips’ flick was diverted on to the roof of the net by Bialkowski, Cooper unable to divert the ball in from close range following a corner before Bialkowski produced a brilliant double save to deny first Clarke and then Hernandez.
Quaner’s shot was deflected behind, Dozzell then making way for Callum Elder, then on 76 minutes Leeds were level, Dallas credited with the goal after the ball had cannoned back off the bar and hit him to cross the line, Town’s claims for handball waved away by referee Gavin Ward.
Three minutes later Leeds were awarded a penalty when Roofe was judged to have been fouled by Chambers, the Town skipper shown a red card but from the spot-kick, Roofe slipped over on contact and the ball spun over the bar.
It was Town who had the final word on 90 minutes, confusion in the Leeds box left Quaner with the goal open and he didn’t miss to give Blues a winning end to the campaign.
Town: Bialkowski, Bree, Chambers, Nsiala, Kenlock, Skuse, Chalobah, Downes (Jackson 61), Dozzell (Elder 73), Judge, Quaner. Subs not used: Gerken, Harrison, Emmanuel, El Mizouni, Brown. Sent-off: Chambers. Booked: Jackson, Nsiala.
Leeds: Casilla, Ayling, Forshaw (Clarke 60), Cooper, Roofe, Dallas, Jansson, Hernandez, Harrison, Phillips, Klich. Subs not used: Peacock-Farrell, Berardi, Edmondson, Shackleton, Gotts, Bogusz. Booked: Casilla, Jansson.