With TOMA 4.0 drawing to a close, there isn’t any great need for more literature on the subject at the moment. Football blogs traditionally have no need to discuss details of Italian import regulations and pre-pack administration, but are there to give an opinion on their team’s on-pitch performance, the manager’s tactics and the abilities of playing staff.
The one thing that the fans see is the team and the manager. So I would like to discuss my own opinion of some of the current playing staff, in the hope that we are able to talk about football and behave like an old fashioned blog.
After a bizarre turn of events, our former captain officially joined play-off hopefuls, Nottingham Forest. Lee Peltier has often divided opinion; is he a right back or is he better in the middle of the back four? Last season it was obvious that he wasn’t captain material and the ‘something’ Neil Warnock saw in him seemed to be non-existent. This season hasn’t been much better and if it wasn’t down to Sam Byram being injured for half the season, I imagine his chances would have been limited at best.
For me his only consistent contribution would be the ability to run a couple of yards with the ball, stop and then pass it backwards for Tom Lees to lump forward. He frequently breaks down our own attacks, taking away any momentum with it. Watching him try and adapt to the wing back role of the 5-3-2 era was one of the most unnatural and uncomfortable looking displays I’ve seen.
One of the most frustrating players I think I have ever seen play for Leeds, when he does occasionally, find himself in an advanced position, his delivery in general is on a par with that of Jimmy Kebe.
With another year left on his contract, do Leeds fans think that Lee has a future at the club? Is he good back up or would Tom Lees do? Brought in as a first choice right back, high up on Warnock’s shopping list, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was one of our higher earners, so I for one would be happy to see him move on.
Bringing in the pace man was supposed to give us more options going forward; instead we have watched him crumble. Seemingly unable to hack the pressures that come with playing for Leeds, the man who ‘didn’t come for a holiday’ needs to pack his bags.
After the justified boo barrage he received against Bolton the writing was on the wall. The combination of Peltier and Kebe down the right was laughable and we are now left with Cameron Stewart, who admittedly hasn’t been great, as our only winger. Kebe isn’t up for the task and Brian must know it, which also means that the systems that we can play as a squad are restricted. You can’t play with one winger.
I feel Stewart can improve, he’s young enough to learn how to cross a ball and has the skills to take a player on, but Kebe for me has become redundant. I’m not buying the ‘injury’ card that we’ve been given; I think he will make one more appearance for Leeds, in the hope that he can do something, anything, that isn’t what he has already shown us. McDermott said this guy had pace to burn, I haven’t seen it.
Seems like a daft question but do any Leeds fans think Kebe has been treated unfairly by the fans? Should Brian send him back to Palace and accept that he isn’t up to the task? Alternatively, would any Leeds fans like to see us make a move for Jimmy on a permanent deal in the summer?
The old faithful, Danny Pugh deserves credit for his early season displays; however the weight of carrying the rest of the squad seems to have taken its toll, with performances deteriorating.
Out of contract in the summer, I think he would be a decent and more importantly for us, cheap squad player if we signed him on a new contract. What do the rest of us think?
Most managers have their favourites and when Neil Warnock took the helm he unfortunately brought in literally all of his. McDermott however, came in from a long tenure at a decent Reading side and it was widely expected he would bring in some of his ‘favourites’, many players of which would slot straight into our starting 11.
Step up Noel Hunt. Okay, I don’t think anyone was bowled over by the signing, but at least thought he would be a first team regular, with his textbook work ethic at least keeping him on the good side of the fans. This never materialised. He seems to do a lot of running on the pitch without influencing the game, not one of the only offenders this season, but considering he was brought in to bolster our front line and give us more attacking options, it is safe to say this transfer hasn’t yet paid off.
If the now famous Cellino rant is based on real honest-to-god facts, Noel Hunt is on 25k a week or at least one of our higher earners, which is totally absurd and quite frankly leaves me questioning the transfer acumen of Brian McDermott. So far he has signed two duds from his old club.
Sure he Hunt seems like a nice guy, but do Leeds fans think that he has been given a fair chance in the starting 11, or is he a waste of wages?
Our promising young left back/left winger/right winger/central midfielder and attacking midfield maestro has promised so much during seasons past, but the fact of the matter is now three Leeds managers have come in worked with Aiden White and we still don’t know his best position, he could even be a striker with his pace.
He has shown moments of brilliance for us, his goal against Everton last season the absolute highlight, but they are very few and very far between, and as a result he was loaned out to Sheffield United this season, before returning to West Yorkshire due to an injury.
I would say that White is a better left back than anything else, with his pace often getting us/himself out of trouble. I’d like to say he has a future with us, but his chances are surely running thin?
I could perhaps go through the entire squad like this, but this will do for now. Are there any players that you think deserve to be praised (apart from McCormack) or criticised for their contributions this season?
With a lot of talk about matters that we don’t always see or understand, for myself at least, it makes a nice change to pretend to be a normal club.
Reporter - Joe Glover