Leeds United 1 Wigan Athletic 1

A stoppage-time equaliser from Shaun MacDonald helped Wigan Athletic secure a priceless point on the road at in-form Leeds.

Tuesday, 18th October 2016, 9:49 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 8:03 pm
Shaun MacDonald

Latics had looked like suffering more away-day woe at Elland Road, with Chris Wood putting the hosts ahead with a fine finish on the half-hour mark.

They piled on the pressure inside the final quarter, but found the home defence - marshalled well by ex-England goalkeeper Rob Green - a tough nut to crack.

But Wales international MacDonald was in the right place at the right time to force home after Max Power had kept alive a deep corner from the Latics right.

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Looking for their first away win of the season, Latics had started brightly with Nick Powell firing wide inside the opening five minutes.

At the other end, Pablo Hernandez did likewise before sending in a corner that skipper Kyle Bartley couldn’t meet cleanly with his head.

Other than that it was a relatively quiet opening quarter, which threatened to come to life when Wood tried his luck from 25 yards that, fortunately for Latics, was snaffled by Adam Bogdan.

A lovely move from Latics saw a David Perkins dummy allows Michael Jacobs in down the left, but his shot was disappointingly straight at Green

Leeds threatened when Dan Burn was nutmegged down the Latics left only for MacDonald to get his colleague out of trouble with a timely intercept.

But the visitors weren’t so lucky moments later, when Burn again couldn’t deal with the danger, and Hadi Sacko’s cross found Wood at the far post.

The striker’s control was instant, and his deadly shot gave Bogdan no chance from 15 yards on the half-hour mark.

Credit Latics for the way they came back into it, however, and they could easily have been level by the half-time whistle.

First, Will Grigg cut the ball back intelligently towards Jacobs, whose shot under pressure hit the post on its way behind for a corner.

Grigg himself then saw a shot from the penalty spot deflect wide for another set-piece.

Latics came closer still four minutes before the interval, when a Powell header from a Jacobs corner was well saved by Green, with the follow-up from Jake Buxton hacked away by a desperate Pontus Jansson.

Yanic Wildschut appeared off the bench for the second half, with Jacobs the man to make way.

But it was the home side who settled into their stride the quicker, with Buxton doing ever so well to block a stinging shot from Sacko.

Bogdan had to be alert to get down to parry a low shot from Leeds defender Luke Ayling, who got his head to the resultant corner only for the goalkeeper to again thwart him.

That was the signal for Gary Caldwell to go all-in on the hour mark, withdrawing Buxton and Nathan Byrne and sending on Craig Morgan and Jordi Gomez.

And it was the visitors who enjoyed the best of the last half and hour, where they asked by far the more probing questions.

Powell was clearly tripped on the edge of the area only for the official to wave play on - a decision that certainly did not please Caldwell in the technical area.

After Bogdan pulled off a super save to claw away a looping header from Wood, the last 10 minutes were all Latics as they hammered on the door.

A curling effort from Power flew only just over the top, although the midfielder should have done much better moments later when he badly sliced a shot from 20 yards.

Power then couldn’t direct a close-range header from a Wildschut cross on target, but he made a priceless contribution in the four added minutes that secured Latics a deserved draw.

The ex-Tranmere man did well to nod back a corner into the danger zone and, although Gomez failed to connect with an overhead kick, MacDonald was on hand to smash home from close range, via the inside of the post.

Leeds: Green; Ayling, Bartley, Jansson, Taylor; O’Kane, Phillips, Sacko, Hernandez, Roofe; Wood.

Subs: Silvestri, Cooper, Antonsson (for Wood, 85), Grimes (for Sacko, 65), Viera, Mowatt for Hernandez, 73), Coyle.

Latics: Bogdan; Byrne, Buxton, Burn, Warnock; MacDonald, Powell, Power, Perkins; Jacobs; Grigg.

Subs: Jaaskelainen, Morgan (for Buxton, 63), Garbutt, Gomez (for Byrne, 63), Wildschut (for Jacobs, 46), Le Fondre, Davies.