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Eseoso Sule screamer denies Leeds United of the PL2 Division 2 title

[Credit: West Brom]

An Eseoso Sule screamer pushed West Bromwich Albion beyond title chasers Leeds United to close out the PL2 Division 2 regular season.

The result means Southampton is automatically promoted to Division 1 as champions on goal difference.

Leeds only needed a point for the title but will now join their opponents in the playoffs, along with Nottingham Forest and Aston Villa.

Albion drew 0-0 with Stoke City earlier in the week but won their previous two games before Monday’s stalemate. Their playoff spot was already confirmed prior to this game as they finish the season in fourth.

The Whites went into the match following a vital 3-1 victory against Middlesbrough and knowing that a positive result would see them become champions.

In the tenth minute, Mateo Joseph struck a shot over the bar following a flurry of chances and a positive first ten minutes for the visitors.

Against the run of play, West Brom took the lead after Fenton Heard’s poked shot hit the post and was followed in by Layton Love.

Following excellent work from Sean McGurk and Charlie Allen, Leeds found an equaliser through Sonny Perkins, who finished into the bottom right corner.

Leeds continued to put pressure on the hosts as the first half drew on, but the Baggies’ defence stood strong.

Ten minutes before the interval, Heard fired a shot wide of the near post as they looked to regain their lead.

Joseph had a great chance to put Leeds ahead at the very end of the first half but skewed his shot over the bar.

In the 53rd minute, Perkins couldn’t replicate the composure he showed in the first half as he received the ball on the turn but lifted his effort over the bar from close range.

Five minutes later, Archie Gray picked up the ball from Joseph, timed his run nicely, and tried to find the far corner, which forced a good save by Ronnie Hollingshead.

Love had a chance to net his second of the game in the 66th minute as he flicked a header wide of the left-hand post.

Soon after, Van den Heuvel was forced into action thanks to a low driven shot by Ethan Ingram.

After 74 minutes, Gray drove at the defense and did well to find the feet of Joseph, but Ingram did enough to recover and prevent a Leeds goal.

With ten minutes to go, Sule hit an absolute rocket into the top left corner to give Albion the lead in emphatic fashion.

Darko Gyabi’s weak-footed effort flew just wide of the top corner as the final whistle fast approached.

Diogo Monteiro was denied by the crossbar in the 94th minute, and Love hooked the ball high and clear in what was Leeds’ last chance to clinch the title.

The Albion victory meant they would go into their playoff campaign off the back of a win against a strong Leeds side.

It also meant Leeds would end the season in second place with Southampton winning the title and automatic promotion to Division 1.

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