After being confirmed as Leeds United’s head coach on a permanent basis Neil Redfearn failed to celebrate with a victory as the Whites went down to their usual defeat at Cardiff City.
Redfearn put pen to paper on a 12-month deal ahead of the match in Wales, with an option of a second year or a return to his job as academy manager.
But his prospects of remaining in the hot seat for the full extent of his contract were handed an immediate blow as he had to watch his team concede three second half goals to lose 3-1 and fail to end their 30-year run without a win against Cardiff.
Redfearn recalled Souleymane Doukara to the starting line-up after he served his one-match suspension and surprisingly left out Brazilian playmaker Adryan with youngster Chris Dawson given a place on the bench, coming on as a second half substitute.
Cardiff started the better and United keeper Marco Silvestri was forced into an early save to deny Peter Whittingham.
Steve Morison had Leeds’ first chance only to head over from Stephen Warnock’s cross then Mirco Antenucci shot over and Doukara saw a low effort saved by home keeper David Marshall.
At the other end, Adam Le Fondre glanced a header just wide and Jason Pearce turned a low Anthony Pilkington cross into the side-netting as the game remained goalless to half-time.
The second half started in lively fashion as Whittingham volleyed over for Cardiff and Giuseppe Bellusci’s free-kick was saved by Marshall.
It was Cardiff who finally found the net just after the hour mark when Bruno Ecuele Manga headed home at the back post.
They then made it two within six minutes as Federico Macheda’s shot went in off Pearce.
United hit back when Doukara found Alex Mowatt and the young midfielder ran onto the ball well before beating Marshall with a calm finish.
However, their hopes of snatching a point were ended as Kenwyne Jones took full advantage of a defensive mix-up to seal a 3-1 win for the hosts.
There was no way back for Leeds and it was Cardiff who looked more likely to score again with Jones heading narrowly wide in added time.
It was a disappointing afternoon in the end for Redfearn, who must now look to back to back home games to try to revive United’s fortunes once again after they dropped to 19th, just four places above the drop zone.
Cardiff City 3
(Manga 61, Macheda 67, Jones 83)
Leeds United 1
Saturday, November 1, 2014
Sky Bet Championship
Cardiff: Marshall, Brayford, Fabio, Manga, Morrison, Whittingham, Gunnarsson, Noone, Pilkington (Ralls 45), Le Fondre (Ravel Morrison 80), Macheda (Jones 75).
Leeds: Silvestri, Berardi (Byram 85), Bellusci, Pearce, Warnock, Bianchi (Sloth 75), Cook, Mowatt, Doukara, Antenucci, Morison (Dawson 69).
Referee: A Woolmer.