Leeds better than Stoke in every department, says Keith Andrews

Leeds were better than Stoke in every department during their opening-day 3-1 victory in the Championship on Sunday, according to Keith Andrews.

Marcelo Bielsa’s first game in charge of the Elland Road club went according to plan, as Leeds dominated Stoke, who are among those fancied to bounce back up to the Premier League this season.

Speaking on Sky Sports after the game, pundit Keith Andrews praised Leeds’ performance, insisting they were first to every ball, but said Stoke were flimsy.

2:40 Marcelo Bielsa said he was moved by the Elland Road atmosphere

“We were maybe all a little bit sceptical of the tactics being employed and if the players were capable of it,” said Andrews.

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“They dominated the game against a team that’s much fancied to win the league, they were first in every single department, tactically very good, not a masterclass but they wanted it more.

“Stoke were nowhere near it today, got the goal back and you thought then the Leeds defence would be tested, but that wasn’t the case. The third goal was crucial in swinging the game back towards Leeds.

“They were first to every ball, they were sharp, bright and the movement was clever. From a Stoke perspective, they were flimsy in the tackle and not really wanting it. The gaps and spaces Leeds were able to exploit were far too easy.”

Leeds, who are now fourth favourites for promotion with Sky Bet, next face Frank Lampard’s Derby County on Saturday at 5.30pm, live on Sky Sports Football.

Paul Heckingbottom was replaced by Bielsa in the summer after taking charge of 16 games towards the end of last season, and speaking in the Sky Sports studio, he was most impressed by Leeds’ work off the ball.

4:06 Leeds 3-1 Stoke

“The biggest thing for me was without the ball, the performance had everything with the ball. “The quality of the goals the intensity without the ball and the tackles, let’s not forget about that.

“The fans responded to that, so the atmosphere was electric, and that’s what they need to make this a fortress and intimidate teams when they come to Elland Road.”