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Leeds Player Ratings - Bolton 2 - 3 Leeds

How did the Leeds United players each perform in our opening day victory.

Birmingham City v Leeds United - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Leeds United opened up their season with a good win away at Bolton Wanderers. It was a good performance overall and a great start for new owner Andrea Radrizzani and new manager Thomas Christiansen. Time now to look at each player and how they performed and you can then tell me I am wrong @mightywhitespod or @ThruItAllLUFC on twitter.


Felix Wiedwald - His first competitive game for Leeds certainly could have been better. Showed some decent work with his feet and his distribution from throws got a few attacks started. However, he looked very shakey when crosses came in to the box. A lack of command from keepers is something Leeds fans have seen a lot of over the last few years so hopefully we will see improvement from him in that regard. Expect to see Rob Green against Port Vale in the League Cup making his case for the position. To be fair, Green had a really poor start last season and did come good by the end of the year. 5/10

Luke Ayling - Much like the vast majority of last season Ayling was good. Solid defensively and looked to get forward down the right when the opportunity presented itself. Helped hold together the makeshift defence after we lost players to injury. Still can’t belive how cheap he was. 7.5/10

Matthew Pennington - Had a fantastic game before having to go off with an ankle injury. Settled straight into his role and showed no signs of nerves. In addition to great work defensively his passing was great and it made everyone around him much calmer. Pete Schlenker wrote a more detailed piece about his performance. 8.5/10

Liam Cooper (c) - Named as captain for the game, Cooper was solid enough at the back. His marking wasn’t particularly good for the first goal but much like Ayling he did very well to hold together a makeshift defence at the end of the game. Started to use the ball better after a few overhit long balls. Did well to silence a few critics of his, should never be first choice but good as a squad player in this league. 7/10

Gaetano Berardi - Played fine but no better than that. As always he was committed but Bolton certainly looked more of a danger against him than they did against Ayling. Had his game ended early when he suffered a dislocated shoulder, just hope it doesn’t keep him out for too long. When everyone is fully fit and available he could well be the player who loses his place after the signing of Cameron Borhwick-Jackson on loan. 6/10

Eunan O’Kane - Another solid performance from a player who, over pre-season, has become more appreciated by Leeds fans. Was good at breaking up play and passed the ball well in his role as our most defensively disciplined midfielder. 7.5/10

Kalvin Phillips - Man of the Match performance from Phillips for me. Scored two goals but also was snapping into tackles and covered the pitch well. Big difference compared to last season with one of our deeper midfielders joining the attack meaning Wood was less isolated (although still work needed with that). Passed the ball fairly well too. Good call by Thomas Christiansen to pick him when many wouldn’t have. 9/10

Kemar Roofe - Looked dangerous when he got on the ball and it was his cross to Alioski that led to Chris Wood’s goal. However, he wasn’t able to get on the ball as much as he would have hoped. Played well in pre-season and this was more of the same. 7.5/10

Pablo Hernandez - Excellent game from the Spaniard. Going into the season I was suggesting him being on the bench for away games but he was fantastic. Excellent use of the ball and was a yard quicker in his decision making than anyone else on the pitch. Very close second to Kalvin Phillips in the Man of the Match stakes for me (Pennington third). His decision to take the low corner to Phillips for the first goal (after excellent work to win the corner in the first place) got us off to the perfect start. Great through ball to Wood for the third goal and also hit the crossbar with a great effort. Hernandez also looked a bit fitter and quicker than last season having had a proper pre-season. Could be hard for Samuel Saiz to get a game if this continues. 8.5/10

Ezgjan Aloski - Got a debut assist for Wood’s goal but definitely more to come from him. Was a little bit quiet but worked hard and made sure he got back in to help when needed. Made a few runs that did more to create space than actually receive the ball. 7/10

Chris Wood - Wood was fairly quiet up front, and still scored one and set up another. Not bad at all for a quiet game. Took his header well and it was good to see a striker pass up a chance to give a teammate a better chance for Phillips’ second goal. Absolutely vital that Leeds keep Wood and that he stays fit. 7.5/10


Vernon Anita (For Berardi, 37mins) - Replaced Berardi at left-back after his dislocated shoulder and did very well. If anything played better than Berardi had. Although he did get dragged into the middle of midfield a couple of times he was always able to get back into position. 7/10

Conor Shaughnessy (For Pennington, 63mins) - Another substitution due to injury led to Shaughnessy making his senior debut. Was always described as a midfielder but was played at centre-back through pre-season and it appears he has a fan in Christiansen. Had a horror start when he tried to remove Gary Madine’s shirt at a corner to give away a penalty. Could have retreated into his shell after that error but did fairly well afterwards. Hopefully more to come from him. 5/10

Hadi Sacko - Came on, showed his pace, showed his propensity for giving the ball away. Had one of his more frustrating days and must have had Stuart Dallas wondering how he wasn’t in the squad? 4.5/10

Overall, a good performance just with improvements needed defensively, could be in for a very entertaining season if that game is anything to go by.