After the Sheffield Wednesday match I said I would try not to be too gloomy as we weren’t in a bad position overall. We still aren’t in a bad position overall but today I make no such assertion. This was awful. Really awful. With some players it was a lack of ideas, some a lack of effort, some a lack of ability to play football. Adding to this mix was a manager who once again did his impression of Garry Monk by refusing to change a system which was not working and we were never going to get anywhere today.
The match was even more frustrating as Reading weren’t very good either, most of their chances were a combination of Leeds errors and (in the case of the goal) terrible refereeing decisions.
The referee was apalling, managing to give Leeds 5 yellow cards in a match with no really bad challenges, and not booking Liam Cooper who really deserved one in the first half for a cynical shirt-pull. On top of this he allowed Samuel Saiz to get kicked and pulled all over the pitch and failed to book any Reading players for time;-wasting despite them doing it from the 1st minute of the game.
It is a bad day when the opposition show up to try and get a 0-0 draw, and we lose 0-1.
Andy Lonergan - Played well. Looked a bit more comfortable under crosses than Felix Wiedwald but his distribution was worse. Read several tweets saying Leeds would have lost by 4/5 if Wiedwald played. Not sure what match they watched as Lonergan only made 3 saves all game and 2 of those he didn’t have to dive for. One very good save, no chance with the goal. Position is his for the forseeable future. 6/10
Couldn't give a good hoot for any of our lot today other than Lonergan and O'Kane. If Wiedwald had played we would have lost 3 or 4 nil.— Elland Road Owl (@EllandRoadOwl) October 14, 2017
Luke Ayling - Was ok but no better than that. Tried his best to drive the team forward when the opportunity presented itself but look incredibly vulnerable against the pace of Mo Barrow, who did more in his 20mins than he did in half a season at Leeds United, and let him in behind far too easily for the goal. Wasn’t helped by the ineffectiveness of Roofe in front of him. 6/10
Pontus Jansson - Poor performance from Jansson today. Didn’t look close to his usual self, personal theory is that he is being more careful to avoid picking up yellow cards and it is having a negative effect on his performances as a whole. Have to take .5 points off his rating for an atrocious miss from about 8 yards out after a clever short corner from Hernandez. It was the kind of miss being a centre-half does not excuse, any professional should score there. 5/10
Liam Cooper - Poor in many of the same areas as Jansson but without the attacking threat. Had lots of space to move into but often refused to do so and this contributed to the incredibly negative 1st half performance. Have some sympathy with him and Jansson as Christiansen is telling them to play from the back and there was no real movement to speak of from the midfield or the wingers when either of them had the ball. Good little through ball for Saiz to win the penalty as well. 5/10
Gaetano Berardi - A couple of decent tackles and a couple of mistakes. Honestly, faded into the background of this game, he was fine. A couple of crossing opportunities that he didn’t make the most of. Really think we need more from left-back and that Borthwick-Jackson must be terrible in training to not even get a look-in. 6/10
Eunan O’Kane - Tried his level best to create something with very little help. Had a couple of shots and played a few nice passes forward. Today, he was streets ahead of his central midfield partner. 6/10
Kalvin Phillips - I have mentioned before that KP has had some unfair stick, not today though. Wasn’t too bad when Reading had the ball and made a couple of tackles but when Leeds had the ball he was terrible. An anonymous performance where he looked as if he didn’t want the ball. Started to make runs in behind but did them slowly and stopped before he got into a position to receive it. Sometimes he was in the correct position and turned to run away. If Ronaldo Vieira is fit he definitely starts the next game, if he isn’t then play Klich. 4/10
Credit to Phillips for upping his game so far this season and looking a much improved player, but where the hell was he today? #lufc— Alex (@BigAl_152) October 14, 2017
Kemar Roofe - Could easily have forgotten he was on the pitch to be honest. Another who didn’t seem to want to get involved but not nearly to the level of Phillips. Came short when there was space in behind and vice versa. Knocked about too easily and could easily have been subbed earlier than he was. Poor. 4.5/10
Time to change around the team, in terms of players & tactics. Firstly Roofe has had his go. He's had lots of chances. Hasn't done it. #LUFC— ETHAN (@EthanFromOnline) October 14, 2017
Samuel Saiz - Thank you Samu, thank you for trying. Looked by far the most likely to create something. Turning back and forth but ultimately the movement ahead of him wasn’t there and he was always crowded out. Unlucky with a reaction header in the second half. Best performer on a poor day. 7/10
If we had 11 Samu Saiz's we'd win the league. Class above the rest of our team— BC (@BC_LUFC) October 14, 2017
Pablo Hernandez - In the first half was probably able to get on the ball more than anyone else in attacking areas but didn’t do much with it. Was better than Roofe but will get the same score due to me removing 1 point for that horrible, pathetic excuse for a penalty that he took when he could have rescued a point. It isn’t that we deserved a point, more that Reading didn’t deserve all 3. 4.5/10
Drunken rant number 1. I've got a tortoise named after Vinnie Jones and he would have taken a better penalty than Hernandez today.— Paul Brewer (@PaulBrewerLUFC) October 14, 2017
Pierre-Michel Lasogga - I don;t know if he has been back and forth to Germany after the birth of his child but PML looked exhausted after about 20mins. Refusing to challenge for the ball in the air, a complete lack of movement. Not all his fault as he was left very isolated but this is 1st time I have seen the lazy player some described before he signed. The only player I thought looked more disinterested than Phillips. That is saying something. 4/10
Questions from today; What is the point in Roofe? Is Lasogga the laziest bastard in the world? #lufc— Mark Hartley (@MarkHartley84) October 14, 2017
Hadi Sacko (For Roofe, 67mins) - Vast improvement on Roofe but as you would expect lack quality at times. Actually did a wingers job by hugging the touchline and forcing the full-back towards his own goal. Worked hard too. Did well overall. 6/10
Fair play to Sacko, has actually made an impact on the game— Jake (@JakeLUFC_) October 14, 2017
Jay-Roy Grot (For Lasogga, 77mins) - Nearly given a sitter for a 1st touch but was denied by Bacuna. After that, worked hard enough but doesn’t look good enough to me. Also seems to lack a football brain, sprinting out wide to get involved when behind in the last minute and you are the tallest player on the pitch isn’t very smart. As ineffective as Lasogga but was less lazy. 4.5/10
Stuart Dallas (For Berardi, 89mins) - We were 1-0 down. Pawel Cibicki is a forward. Why TC didn’t bring him on instead is beyond me. Dallas wasn’t on long enough to really give him a score. N/A