Leeds United: Evans deserves credit for two wins in a challenging situation - Lorimer

Lee Erwin training.
Lee Erwin training.
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WE headed into the international break on the back of two much-needed wins and for me, you have got to give Steve Evans a lot of credit.

There’s obviously been a change of coach and we lost badly at home to Blackburn and Steve had to pick the players up and we have taken the six points and it’s been a fair job.

You can’t underestimate how difficult a thing to do that is in the circumstances, especially with everything else going on at the club at this particular time.

Steve’s enthusiasm and passion is there for all to see. He sees this job as once in a lifetime. He’s honoured to be here and wants to be here and do well and sees it as his biggest challenge in management and he’s probably right.

Certainly, I have been very impressed because he’s made sure the attitude of the players through a dodgy period has been right, even with a change of coach and talk of the owner maybe moving on.

Under those circumstances, it’s difficult to keep the spirits up in the dressing room and it hasn’t looked like that has been affected in the past two games.

What you see with Steve is genuine involvement and passion. He’s not doing it for show as he has previously managed two or three clubs and that simply is how he is. He has terrific enthusiasm and it catches on and people do respond to it.

Yes, there’s no question he needs two or three players, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. But you have got to get on with what you have got and get the best out of what you have got and fair play to him.

I am personally delighted as when you meet him, you see he has taken a personal pride at what he has done over the past few games.

Onto last weekend’s derby win and, for me, the atmosphere among the Leeds fans at Huddersfield was absolutely fantastic on Saturday and it was just like you want when you go to a game.

Everyone was totally behind the team and they responded with three goals and it was just a pleasure to be there and a great occasion.

We go to football to be in that fantastic atmosphere like it was on Saturday and no-one was thinking about off-the-field issues or anything. You could enjoy the banter between the Huddersfield and Leeds fans and obviously we were winning and it was a great occasion.

It was a pleasure after a few weeks of pressure and we saw none of that.

Obviously, everyone appreciates that the Blackburn game was difficult and hard to take, especially being two goals down early on. But players respond to fans and when the fans were like they were on Saturday, you could see it lifted the players and it was a big part in us winning the game.

In fairness, Huddersfield was a game in which we took our chances and they didn’t.

It wasn’t really a 3-0 sort of game and it flattered us a little bit.

But in saying that, all three goals were terrific goals and it was marvellous – a 3-0 derby win against local rivals going into an international break.

It’s now on to Rotherham at home after the international break and without getting carried away, it’s a game that we should win and that will enable us to move further away from that dreaded bottom six that you don’t want to be in around Christmas. If you are, the pressure is automatically on.

Let’s face it, if we hadn’t beaten Cardiff and Huddersfield, we’d have been in that bottom four or five and in trouble.

We still need players in for me, especially some defenders and we need a few natural defenders and cover at the back with a bit of height and pace. We also need a goalkeeper and maybe an extra forward.

But certainly, our biggest priority is to strengthen at the back as you can see the frailties that are there and you like to have some cover and we haven’t got too much of that.

It might be an international break, but Leeds have arranged a friendly at Wycombe tonight and I can see the sense in that.

I’d imagine that Steve wants to have a look at the likes of Casper Sloth and Lee Erwin before the transfer window opens in January as the pair of them have not had a chance so far this season along with two or three others.

He will use this game to try and find out a few things on these players and before he makes decisions. It will be good for these fringe players to get a game as well as they will feel more part of it.

Eunan O'Kane.

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