Derby County 2 Leeds United 2: Stats prove Saiz was back with a bang
SAMU SAIZ returned to the Leeds United side with a bang with an 80 per cent passing success rate and a crucial assist for Gjanni Alioski's goal in Wednesday night's 2-2 draw at Derby County.
The 27-year-old playmaker came back into the United side following his six-game ban as a 55th-minute substitute for Kemar Roofe and the Spaniard made 15 passes in just 35 minutes on the pitch with 12 of them accurate.
Saiz - who had 27 touches of the ball - was dispossessed just once and a passing success rate of 80 per cent featured a key dribble topped off by an assist via a perfect square ball for Alioski's goal in the 79th minute.
Only three Whites players had a higher passing success rate during the entire game with Roofe actually successful with 88 per cent of his passes (seven out of eight) though Roofe had just 11 touches of the ball before he was brought off.
Pontus Jansson had 58 touches of the ball and a passing success rate of 84 per cent with Adam Forshaw next best at 82 per cent following 57 touches.
Only Pablo Hernandez made more key passes with Hernandez taken off for Alioski in the 77th minute.
Whites head coach Paul Heckingbottom had said in his pre-match press conference that Saiz would take time to get "back up to speed" but the Spaniard clearly immediately hit the ground running at Pride Park.
"He's had a long time out missing six games," Heckingbottom had said.
"We have been with him now for two weeks so he's had lots of extra sessions with Berra and Coops as well so they have been doing all they can, getting pushed and they have performed well in that because they have been pushed and I know there have been some sore limbs as well in the days after and we have then looked after them.
"But regardless of how much we do here and on the training ground, Championship games are totally different and it will take a while before you are back up to speed again and back up to 100 per cent."