Leeds United fans might look back on the date August 29 2015 later on in the season. Not only did Leeds get their first win of the season away at Derby County, but Chris Wood scored a incredible winner, his third goal in a row for the West Yorkshire club.
Despite being only 23, the New Zealand striker has played for an impressive 11 clubs and scored an impressive 60 career goals. He has also already had a sparkling international career by representing the Kiwis in the FIFA Confederations Cup, the FIFA World Cup and the Olympics.
He was the youngest player to travel to South Africa with the All Whites and he was the third youngest player in the whole tournament. To top it all off, Chris Wood made history on November 14 last year as he became the New Zealand International side's youngest ever captain, aged 22 years, 9 months, and 7 days.
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After starting off in New Zealand for Waikato FC and Hamilton Wanderers, Wood was put forward to West Bromwich Albion's Academy. During his four year stint at the Baggies, Wood made 21 senior appearances and was sent out on loan six times. The most successful loan being at Millwall, with Wood scoring 11 goals in 19 games.
The last club Wood was loaned out at, Leicester City, were so impressed by the youngster that they decided to make a bid for him and sign him after seeing off competition from fellow Championship side Millwall.
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Wood enjoyed success at Leicester during his two years there after the initial setback of losing in the play off Semi-Final in the 2012-13 season. They bounced back defeat to win the Championship the following season, giving Wood his second chance to play Premiership football.
During last season, Wood was sent out on a brief loan to Ipswich Town but Leicester's ultimately successful relegation battle meant that the loan contract was terminated prematurely. Last season in the Premiership, Wood made seven appearances off the bench for Leicester and scored the equaliser in a 2-2 draw vs Everton in Leicester's first Premiership match for 10 years.
On July 1, Leeds United signed Wood on a four-year contract from Leicester for an undisclosed fee of around £2.5 - 3 million, in the process becoming Leeds's most expensive signing for 13 years. Wood was handed the coveted number nine shirt, worn previously by such club legends as John Charles, Mark Viduka and Mick Jones.
As the season started, the Leeds faithful were hoping for Wood to be the striker that would get them back in the Premier League. After failing to score a couple of easy chances on the opening day of the season, fans were still left hoping.
It was a Capital One Cup tie versus fellow Yorkshire outfit Doncaster Rovers that nearly turned him into public enemy number one at Elland Road after blasting his penalty over the bar and sealing Leeds's fate as they crashed out of the League Cup in the first round for the first time in the club's history.
A draw against Reading followed and Leeds were still left looking for their first win of the season, and Wood still looking for his first goal. Leeds were set to play a newly promoted Bristol City side, a fixture with some historical significance (the team Leeds came back to win 2-1 at Elland Road in a tension-filled match that secured their promotion to the championship back in 2010). Wood also had a good record of scoring at Ashton Gate (he scored a hat-trick there in 2013 with Leicester) so the game looked as if it was three easy points for Leeds.
At 52 minutes, Wood scored Leeds's second of the match after a remarkable counter attack/one-two with Antenucci topped off with a beautifully placed curled shot from the edge of the box into the bottom right hand corner. The game looked as good as won but unfortunately it wasn't to be for Leeds as Bristol City nicked two goals in the closing minutes of the game.
Now Wood had his first of the campaign, it wasn't long until he got his second. A tap in vs Sheffield Wednesday cancelled out Marco Matias' first half wonder goal to make the score 1-1 in front of the home crowd.
It was Wood's second goal and Leeds's fourth draw in a row. With fans growing impatient at the lack of results, a lethargic Leeds team (Uwe Rosler and his men had played four matches in nine days) managed to get a week's rest before they visited Derby at the iPro Stadium.
They managed to go 1-0 up just before half-time thanks to fellow new-signing Tom Adeyemi's header. Derby started the second half with an attacking mentality which eventually resulted in an equaliser. As the game drew to a close, both teams had chances, it took the energy of substitute Marco Antenucci and a moment of individual brilliance from Wood that secured Leeds' first win of the season and Wood's first goal.
All that Leeds fans can hope for now is that Chris Wood continues to have a rich and fruitful season with the mighty whites and hopefully by the end of the season they might just have a shot of getting promoted.
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