Leeds out of relegation zone after late equaliser

Pascal Struijk headed home in injury time to nick a 1-1 draw with Brighton which moves Leeds out of the relegation zone and gives them hope of survival, Newspremises reports.

Jesse Marsch’s side were heading for a perilous position on the final day when Danny Welbeck chipped home a first-half opener.

Time looked to be running out but a spirited second-half display was capped by a late Struijk header that lifted the roof off Elland Road as it takes Leeds out of the bottom three by one point at the expense of Burnley, who have a game in hand on their relegation rivals.

That clash comes on Thursday at Aston Villa while Leeds play Brentford on the final day and the Clarets face Newcastle.

Leeds almost made a dream start when Joe Gelhardt’s effort following a corner was inadvertently blocked on the goal-line by the face of his skipper Liam Cooper.

After that early chance, the visitors took over and the opening goal duly arrived, courtesy of more lightweight Leeds defending that has blighted their season.

Rodrigo, the club’s record signing, dithered in possession and Brighton midfielder Yves Bissouma was left unchallenged as he came away with the ball.

Leeds still were well set to defend the attack but Welbeck out-paced and out-muscled the hapless Diego Llorente before dinking an excellent finish over Illan Meslier.

Raphinha snatched at a half-opening early in the second period and Jack Harrison blazed over.

Robert Sanchez produced a flying save to keep out Raphinha’s thumping drive from a free-kick and the Brazilian then turned Rodrigo’s arcing low cross just the wrong side of a post as Leeds gave Elland Road plenty to cheer.

However, with time running out, the home fans sensed it was not to be their day and a section turned on the club’s hierarchy.

A chorus of “sack the board” rang out as Welbeck missed a golden chance to seal victory for the Seagulls in the closing stages by heading Leandro Trossard’s cross wide.

But in the second minute of added time, Gelhardt evaded several challenges in Brighton’s box and crossed to the far post where Struijk rose to head home a vital equaliser.

Leeds have hope going into the final day.

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