Relieved Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa saluted an important 2-0 win against gutsy Hull at a packed Elland Road.
The hosts had to really dig in to secure their seventh straight victory, pocketing three points which lifted them – for 24 hours at least – above West Brom and onto the top of the Championship table.
The two goals did not come until the closing stages, but few would begrudge Leeds their latest victory, and perhaps equally as important, their fourth successive clean sheet.
Bielsa said: “Hull City were not the best team to come here this season at the beginning of the game, but in the end this has been a very important win for us.
“It was a game of two different halves. In the first half we were good, but we faced an opponent with a very attractive style of play.
“They have got players who really want to play the right way. We were superior than them in the second half, though. We balanced the game up in the second half.
“We couldn’t stop Hull’s chances, but we kept on the offensive. We risked the result in the second half, but once we had scored the second goal, we then managed the game very well.”
Bielsa insisted his team were worthy winners on the night.
He added: “We had a lot of crosses and chances, and the conclusion is that we deserved the victory.
“We could have secured an easier win, but that didn’t happen and so we move on to the next game now.”
Both sides created a number of chances to score until the match was finally decided with the two Leeds goals in the final 17 minutes.
In front of a crowd of more than 35,000, Leeds eventually went in front rather fortuitously when Hull defender Jordy De Wijs diverted Helder Costa’s cross into his own net from four yards out.
Leeds’ second breakaway goal finally finished off gutsy Hull with eight minutes to go.
As the hosts broke after Tom Eaves had been denied by a goal-line clearance at one end, Patrick Bamford thumped the post at the other, with substitute Ezgjan Alioski lashing home the rebound from the acutest of angles.
Tigers boss Grant McCann clearly had mixed feelings after a defeat which leaves his side in mid-table.
McCann said: “I’m not interested in any hard luck stories after another defeat. We got zero points and that’s that.
“I was pleased with the performance, but although we have been quite ruthless so far this season, we weren’t tonight.
“You’ve got to have that bit of luck sometimes, and when you’re in Leeds’ position, you tend to get that.
“We pressed, we harried, but we didn’t get that crucial goal.
“You could say we didn’t get the rub of the green, but we also didn’t get shots off at crucial times.”
McCann also felt sympathy for unfortunate defender De Wijs, whose own-goal set Leeds on their way.
“I feel for Jordy,” added McCann.
“He had played well up against one of the best strikers in the Championship in Bamford.
“The ball just came off him, though. There was nothing he could do. It was just one of those things.”