Leeds United - talking points: Youth against experience, Helder Costa's new role and Eddie Nketiah strikes again

Leeds United's Eddie Nketiah celebrates at Elland Road.
Leeds United's Eddie Nketiah celebrates at Elland Road.
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Leeds United fell to a penalty shootout defeat at the hands of Stoke City on Tuesday evening in the Carabao Cup - but what were the key talking points?

The Whites battled back from a two-goal deficit at the break to earn a hard-fought 2-2 in ninety minutes, which left penalties to decide who would head into the third round of the competition.

The Potters eventually triumphed at a packed Elland Road under the lights, as Marcelo Bielsa's side exited the tournament in battling fashion.

Here are some of the talking points from LS11:

Youth against experience

Eight changes for Leeds, nine for Stoke City.

The two sides came to blows for a second time in four days after United's 3-0 demolition in the Potteries but there were two very different sides on display in LS11.

Marcelo Bielsa opted to hand youth a chance with Leif Davis, Alfie McCalmont and Mateusz Bogusz being handed their first Elland Road starts.

Jamie Shackleton, Jack Clarke and Eddie Nketiah also featured in what was a young line-up for the Whites.

Experience came out on top in the opening 45 minutes as Stoke headed into the break with a two-goal lead.

Shackleton and McCalmont were sacrificed along with Clarke at the break with the trio failing to make a major impact on the game despite relative dominance from Leeds.

Still... it was a good experience for United's youngsters that exposed them into a professional environment.

Helder Costa... as a right wing-back?

As the team news landed at Elland Road immediate thoughts turned to a 3-3-1-3 formation.

In reality Bielsa's side were much more fluid, but one noticeable decision was the choice to deploy Helder Costa as a right wing-back in the opening half.

United didn't have much joy in the first period on the right, though on one occasion the Portuguese winger set off on a driving run and flashed a shot wide of Jack Butland's goal from distance.

The decision to free Costa from his defensive duties in the second half ended with the attacker finding the back of the net to level proceedings with just nine minutes to go.

An experiment you would think.

Super subs

Ben White, Adam Forshaw and Jack Harrison were Bielsa's triple roll of the dice at the break with Leeds trailing 2-0.

All three came on and had a major impact in hauling United level with a second half fightback that ignited Elland Road.

Forshaw headed into the engine room with Harrison putting in a man of the match performance on the left hand side of midfield.

White produced one moment of magic in another strong defensive display as his crossfield raking ball split the Potters defence in two as he found Helder Costa who met his pass with a volley.

Three inspired changes, despite United falling short on penalties.

Eddie Nketiah and very good Davis

That's three goals from four shots for Eddie Nketiah.

The Arsenal loanee has made an impressive start to his move to Leeds United this summer. His goal against Stoke was a measure of his composure as he pounced on a Jack Butland mistake to hand Untied a way back into the tie. He also bagged from the spot in emphatic fashion.

Leif Davis also put in a strong performance as he produced a stern defensive display with a number of vital blocks, the young defender bagged an assist and he whipped in a wonderful cross from the left which allowed Helder Costa to head home.

Very good, Davis. As Bielsa would say.

Harrison heartache

Someone had to be the fall guy.

Unfortunately for Jack Harrison he was the unlucky party who missed United's final spot-kick as Stoke headed into the hat for the third round of the competition.

Leeds fans, though, remained behind at Elland Road to sing his name as he apologised afterwards.

Harrison has returned this summer with real vigour and was ultimately the game changer for Bielsa. An unfortunate role, but the winger and Leeds fans won't remember it for long.

Top of the table clash awaits

Attention now turns to Swansea City as Leeds welcome Steve Cooper's side to Elland Road this weekend.

We're only five games into the new campaign but either side has an opportunity to enter the international break with a three point lead as the top two come to blows.

The Swans have matched United stride for stride so far this season with four wins and a draw from their opening fixtures.

Leeds will have to keep an eye on one man in particular, with striker Borja Baston starting the campaign in red hot form.

The Spaniard has bagged five goals in five fixtures for Swansea, and carries a real aerial threat from set-pieces.