Soccer-Leeds snatch draw with Wolves as Rodrigo nets late penalty

Soccer - England - Premier League - Leeds United v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Elland Road, Leeds, Britain - October 23, 2021 Wolverhampton Wanderers' Nelson Semedo fouls Leeds United's Joe Gelhardt and concedes a penalty REUTERS/Craig Brough

LEEDS, England (Reuters) -Leeds United's Spanish striker Rodrigo earned a 1-1 home draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers as he scored a stoppage-time penalty to cancel out Hwang Hee-chan's early opener for the visitors in the Premier League on Saturday.

It was a scrappy performance by Leeds, who had to dig deep after a toothless display for much of the contest, but they salvaged a point after pegging Wolves back in the closing stages.

The visitors, who stretched their unbeaten league run to four games, having won the previous three, are 10th on 13 points from nine games while Leeds stayed 17th on seven points.

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa felt his side deserved to win and praised second-half substitute Joe Gelhardt, who made an impact after coming on for Mateusz Klich in the 63rd minute and won the penalty with neat footwork.

"We deserved something more than the draw," Bielsa told Sky Sports. "Apart from some things at the start of both halves, we had the control of the game.

"Progressively we started to get closer and closer to the goal and to have won the game would have been more in accordance with what happened on the pitch.

"Gelhradt ... was causing danger constantly, not only the penalty but a few occasions he could have scored."

Hwang netted an opportunist 10th-minute goal, steering in a shot with the outside of his foot from close range after Nelson Semedo broke clear and squared the ball to Raul Jimenez, whose effort fell kindly to the South Korean forward.

Leeds dominated the first half but failed to create much up front against a well organised Wolves defence, as visiting goalkeeper Jose Sa smothered a Raphinha shot from long range before Jack Harrison fired well wide from inside the area.

Home keeper Illan Meslier blocked a Rayan Ait Nouri drive from a tight angle shortly after the break and Leeds struggled to carve out any chances before Sa kept out Gelhardt's shot with a superb save in the 79th minute.

Gelhardt blazed over the bar several minutes later and capped his fine performance with a jinking run which forced Semedo to haul him down and Rodrigo made no mistake from the spot by sending Sa the wrong way.

(Writing by Zoran Milosavljevic; Editing by Toby Davis and Ken Ferris)

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