Forest Green Rovers 1-2 Leeds United

Goals from Kemar Roofe and Luke Ayling gave head coach Marcelo Bielsa a winning start to his Leeds United tenure, with victory over Forest Green Rovers in pre-season.

Bielsa named a squad of just 15 players to travel to the New Lawn in the first of six pre-season games ahead of the 2018/19 campaign.

Leeds started brightly and Roofe had an opportunity inside five minutes when he was played in on goal, he squared to Ezgjan Alioski, but he was unable to get an effort away on goal.

Roofe then had another chance, when a cross fell to him at the back post, but his snap shot was saved by James Montgomery.

Leeds took the lead in the 16th minute from a corner, Pablo Hernandez’s delivery fell to Roofe and he fired home from close range.

The Whites went further ahead in the 25th minute following a fine move, Hernandez flicked a ball into the box into the path of Roofe who teed up Ayling and he curled a lovely effort into the left corner.

Leeds had could have gone further ahead when Ayling put in a good cross from the right, but Stuart Dallas and Ezgjan Alioski went for the same ball and missed the chance.

Two minutes before the break, Roofe should have put Leeds further in front, Liam Cooper sent Dallas down the wing with a neat through ball, he then picked out Roofe in the Forest Green box, but he fired straight at Montgomery.

The home side then got back into the game on the stroke of half time, when Dayle Grubb found the top left corner with an effort from the edge of the box.

Half Time: Forest Green Rovers 1-2 Leeds United

The Whites almost made a fine start to the second half, Dallas fired from range and his effort was just tipped around the post.

Leeds continued to press and Samuel Saiz fed Alioski into the box, but he was denied by a good save from Montgomery, when shooting from a narrow angle.

Forest Green Rovers were next to go close, Joseph Mills put a good ball into the Leeds box and found Christian Doidge, but he was denied by a super save from Bailey Peacock-Farrell to keep United in front.

Saiz then tried to find the top corner with a looping effort from the edge of the box, but his effort was just too high.

Adam Forshaw then tried his luck from distance, but his effort was well saved by the impressive Montgomery in the Forest Green goal.

Leeds almost added a third when Saiz floated a lovely cross into the Forest Green box, but Roofe could only head off target.

Hernandez was next to try his luck from a free-kick from 25 yards, his effort almost found the top corner, but was just inches too high.

Just moments after the free-kick, Hernandez had another opportunity when he broke in on goal from the right, but he couldn’t get the better of Montgomery who made himself big, as Leeds were made to settle for a single goal victory.

Full Time: Forest Green Rovers 1-2 Leeds United

Venue: New Lawn

Attendance: 3,250 (1,161 Leeds)

Referee: S. Allison