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Leeds United boss Daniel Farke hails 'top class striker' after Sheffield Wednesday win

Leeds boss Daniel Farke felt his side fully deserved “a massive three points” after a 2-0 win at Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday lifted them back into the top two.

Patrick Bamford broke the deadlock deep in first-half stoppage time and Willy Gnonto struck a killer second just before the hour-mark as Leeds extended their unbeaten league run this year to 12 matches.

Farke’s side leap-frogged Ipswich into second place, two points behind Sky Bet Championship leaders Leicester, with their automatic promotion rivals, including Southampton, due to play on Saturday.

The German said: “It was a well-deserved win. I think it was a pretty mature performance, a pretty controlled performance.

“Obviously you could feel that Sheffield were on a good run, playing with confidence and an excited home crowd.

“But you have to tire the opponent, take the enthusiasm and the aggressiveness away. I’m pretty proud of my lads tonight. It was a massive three points for us.”

Leeds goalkeeper Illan Meslier’s brilliant first-half save thwarted Owls forward Anthony Musaba, but after Bamford turned home Junior Firpo’s raking low cross at the far post, the visitors took control.

Farke added: “Everyone speaks about the goal (Bamford) scored at Peterborough in the (FA) Cup – a worldie – this (goal tonight) is for me also like a world-class striker goal.

“To have this instinct. Will Junior be there with the cross? To have the movement away from the opponent at the far post and then you still have to have the concentration to get the ball down.

“It wasn’t that easy to score and this is a sign of a top-class striker. When it counts you have to be there and you have to be clinical, so we are all happy that we have Patrick and also have him in his best shape.”

Wednesday had won five of their previous six league games in their battle to avoid the drop, but missed the chance to climb out of the relegation zone for the first time since August.

Manager Danny Rohl, who said he was proud of his side, was booked in the second period for protesting over a foul, but said his emotions were running high due to the amount of injury time referee Sam Allison had played at the end of the first half.

The Owls boss said: “It was a key point. Of course he showed four minutes and then it was four minutes more – and everyone can think about if this is a key moment.

“I’m really not happy about this moment. We were hoping to go in at half-time at zero-zero. I will not speak too much about some decisions.”

Rohl added: “Maybe a decision against us and today we can speak about this. This is football, we have to take it and keep going.”

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