Adam Forshaw reflects on Leeds United 'sniff' against Arsenal and makes admission over mounting absentees

Adam Forshaw admitted Leeds United were punished for their first-half display against Arsenal and that his side were in tough times due to a large list of absentees.

By Lee Sobot
Saturday, 18th December 2021, 9:08 pm

The Gunners caused mayhem going forward in Saturday evening's Premier League clash at Elland Road and Mikel Arteta's side led 3-0 at the break after a brace from Gabriel Martinelli was followed by a Bukayo Saka strike.

Leeds improved after the break and pulled a goal back in the 75th minute as Raphinha smashed home a penalty awarded for Ben White's foul on Joe Gelhardt but the Gunners added a fourth goal in the 86th minute through substitute Emile Smith Rowe.

Marcelo Bielsa' s Whites had ten players missing - eight of whom were injured - and defeat followed Tuesday night's 7-0 hammering at Manchester City and last weekend's 3-2 loss at Chelsea.

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TOUGH NIGHT: For Leeds United and midfielder Adam Forshaw, right, in Saturday evening's Premier League clash against Arsenal at Elland Road. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

"It's a tough one to take again," said Forshaw, speaking to LUTV.

"We weren't great again in the first half unfortunately and we rallied at half time and I felt like we put a performance in second half.

"There was a slight sniff after the goal went in at 3-1 but the fourth goal was a sucker punch."

Asked why the first half was not great, Forshaw reasoned: "I'm not too sure.

"I think it's hard to analyse now. We will have to look back on the game and go from there but they have quality players in the final third and they punished us unfortunately."

Leeds had eight players injured for the clash - Kalvin Phillips, Patrick Bamford, Liam Cooper, Rodrigo, Pascal Struijk, Jamie Shackleton, Dan James and Charlie Cresswell all on the treatment table.

Junior Firpo also missed the Gunners clash due to suspension and Diego Llorente was an absentee, head coach Bielsa revealing the defender was ill and would miss at least the next ten days.

"Times are tough for us at the moment, there's no denying it," said Forshaw.

"Without making too many excuses we have got Covid cases this morning, we have got illness in the group, nine fit first team players unfortunately so we are stretched.

"We are counting on young lads and hopefully it will be good experience for them to help us in the future."

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Thank you Laura Collins