- United held by Leeds
- Skubala urged to close down in midfield
- His tactics paid off
WHAT HAPPENED? Skubala was on the touchline as Leeds caretaker boss for the first time after Jesse Marsch's dismissal as head coach, and it was a night to remember for him as his troops stole a point from United after a thrilling contest. Leeds were 1-0 up at the interval thanks to an early Wilfried Gnonto strike, and Sky Sports posted an image of Skubala's notes on social media during the break. The scribbles on his small whiteboard appeared to say ‘Close middle’, ‘Believe’ and ‘Be calm’ - with the first instruction indicating that Leeds set about targeting United's midfield in order to gain the upper hand. The tactics seemed to work initially as Leeds doubled their advantage thanks to a Raphael Varane own goal in the 48th minute, but United then battled back to earn a draw via goals from Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: United's midfield looked weak in the absence of Casemiro, who is serving a three-match suspension for his red card against Crystal Palace. The combination of Fred and Marcel Sabitzer failed to produce the goods in the middle of the park and Leeds were able to break through the lines freely throughout the 90 minutes.
WHAT NEXT? Leeds will take on United once again on Sunday in the Premier League reverse fixture at Elland Road.