Darko Milanic is still searching for his first win as Leeds boss after Giuseppe Bellusci salvaged a point for the hosts in a feisty Yorkshire derby.
The Slovenian has now been in charge for half the six matches his predecessor David Hockady was afforded by owner Massimo Cellino. And a defeat by rivals Sheffield Wednesday would not have gone down well with the Italian known as “the manager eater” from his time at Cagliari. A Chris Maguire strike on 52 minutes looked like giving Stuart Gray’s men all three points but defender Bellusci – rapidly become a hero at Elland Road – finished calmly.
Leeds put together some crisp early passing moves but were unable to find a meaningful final ball.
Wednesday keeper Keiren Westwood had to tip over a long-range effort from Rudy Austin and get down well to stop Alex Mowatt.
Before the break, Stevie May headed a Maguire cross wide with keeper Marco Silvestri well beaten. Then a mix-up by Glen Loovens and Westwood let Mirco Antenucci in but his lofted shot was cleared by Jose Semedo.
Westwood denied Antenucci twice but Wednesday broke the deadlock after a swift counter-attack. Jacques Maghoma’s deep cross fell perfectly for Maguire, who smashed a sweet right-footed volley into the far corner.
Then with 11 minutes left a Mowatt free-kick fell to Bellusci and the defender side-footed home.
Leeds manager Milanic said it was the best performance he has seen from his side. “We played a good game I thought we could have won but their keeper was extremely good. After they scored, we lost our calm but after we scored I thought we could win.”
Owls boss Stuart Gray paid tribute to Westwood. “He’s a top, top keeper. I actually think I’ve got the best two keepers in the division with him and Chris Kirkland.
“When we got in front I thought it we would win. It was a great strike. Chris can be very good – he doesn’t pass on the responsibility.”
Leeds (4-3-3): Silvestri; Byram, Pearce, Bellusci, Berardi; Bianchi, Mowatt, Austin; Sloth (Cooper, 46), Doukara (Sharp, 68), Antenucci.
Sheffield Wed (4-5-1): Westwood; Palmer, Lees, Loovens, Mattock; Maguire (Helan, 70), Semedo (Coke, 83), Lee, Maghoma, May; Nuhiu (Madine, 46).
Referee: James Adcock.
Man of the match: Westwood (Wednesday).
Match rating: 7/10Reuse content