A ruthless Daniel Farke alteration is required when a "shaky" Leeds United player commits a 3/10 blunder - View - Flashfootballnews
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A ruthless Daniel Farke alteration is required when a “shaky” Leeds United player commits a 3/10 blunder – View

Leeds United captain Liam Cooper was unable to capitalise on his strong injury comeback in September, as his clean sheet against Watford was followed by a poor performance at Southampton.

The Whites‘ unbeaten run in the Championship came to an end with a 3-1 loss against Southampton on Saturday afternoon, despite being second best for 90 minutes at St Mary’s.

Leeds southhampton
Leeds southhampton

Individuals were to blame at times as the hosts raced into a 3-0 lead in the first half, but Daniel Farke will know that his team were not set up well as Russell Martin got the better of him.

What about the defence?
Farke is facing an intriguing selection dilemma in center-back, with Liam Cooper getting the nod over the returning Joe Rodon after his one-game ban.

Farke‘s choice, however, was not justified as Cooper was caught motionless as Adam Armstrong broke in behind just two minutes to loft the ball over Illan Meslier, earning a 3/10 overall from the YEP:

Liam Cooper
Liam Cooper

“I was caught off guard by the first and then struggled to make amends.” I jumped in but didn’t always get the ball. “Uncertain performance.”

A failure to prevent Kamaldeen Sulemana‘s advances down Jamie Shackleton’s right, and an acknowledgement from Ethan Ampadu that Will Smallbone shouldn’t have been unmarked to roll home a second, didn’t help circumstances, which was exacerbated when Armstrong grabbed his second while tying Sam Byram in knots, didn’t help matters.

Daniel Farke et al
Daniel Farke et al

Farke must drop Cooper.

The focus now shifts to QPR at home on Thursday, where Farke will be obliged to make changes based on such a terrible performance.

Who comes out of the defensive isn’t really evident, with Pascal Struijk the only player who can claim any pride for defending well and scoring to cut the deficit.

Leeds don’t have many choices at full-back, but Rodon just has to be back in the centre to partner Struijk.

Leeds’ run of clean sheets coincided with those two playing together at the heart of defence, and in order to regain that rock-solid form, Rodon and Struijk – who appears to be leading by example right now – must both start.

 

 

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