Leeds United: The missed chances came back to haunt us - Gray

Ross McCormack heads goalwards. PIC: Simon Hulme
Ross McCormack heads goalwards. PIC: Simon Hulme
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SATURDAY’S display against Leicester was probably one of the best performances from the club for a while. In the first 25 minutes, we were dominating the game and we had some chances.

Ross McCormack hit the post and missed a great chance – as did Tom Lees with a header. We were playing well.

But gradually Leicester came into the game. They are an experienced outfit and they started to pass the ball a bit. And I think the feeling was that the chances that we missed could come back to haunt us – which they did. Unfortunately we conceded a goal very late in the game and there’s not much chance to get back into it. But we never really dominated like we did in the early part of the game. We never sustained it although if you make chances and take your chances it’s a completely different game.

Overall, the performance was a lot better and I think it suited us playing a side that was top of the league as there wasn’t as much pressure on the players. The fans expected a tough game which it was but the longer the game was going on, everybody just had that feeling that Leicester are going to nick one here which they did. It was their only shot on target really but it was enough to win them the game.

As for us, I think 4-4-2 is the way that Brian McDermott will play with the two wingers.

Jimmy Kebe and Cameron Stewart never did a lot on Saturday to be honest but you have got to give them an opportunity and they have not played a lot of games, especially Kebe. I didn’t think he actually looked match fit yet. But he’ll get there and if you are going to play two wingers you have got to play 4-4-2.

It was just disappointing for us on Saturday and I think Brian will have been as disappointed as he’s been in the last few weeks – not with the way we played – but because we never got the result that he and most people felt we deserved.

It’s not panic stations yet but you don’t want the season to fizzle out. And the ideal scenario I think would be to be about four or five points behind the play-off teams with half a dozen games to go. Then you are still in real contention. But you don’t want to let the season fizzle out though it can happen to teams that have been knocked out of the FA Cup early. You have only one competition to play for and if you don’t pick it up the season can just peter out. We don’t want that to happen – not at a club like ours.

I think Brian will still be looking to bring players in and it’s important this takeover goes through as quickly as possible so that everybody is pulling in the same direction. The quicker the club gets sorted out the earlier we’ll be able to push forward and bring players in though I thought Luke Varney did well on Saturday. And I think it’s a good decision to make Ross McCormack captain instead of Rudy Austin. I think it was just playing on Rudy’s mind. He’s an all-action player but as a captain you’ve got to have a little bit more and you have to be able to stand back and analyse the game and where you can hurt teams and where teams are hurting you. I don’t think that’s in Rudy’s make-up and I think Rudy’s just better going out and playing his own game.

We have no game this weekend but that will give Brian a chance to work with the players and the new system for a week. It will give the players a little bit a of a break so they can sit back and take stock of things and it will probably help the likes of Kebe and Stewart to get ready for the game at home to Ipswich next Tuesday. If we play like we did against Leicester then there’s no reason why we can’t win that game.

Lastly, it was great to see so many ex-players there to pay their respects to Bobby Collins on Saturday. I think that just goes to show you what the ex-players all felt about him. The usual boys were there but when you get the likes of big Jack Charlton coming down from the north-east with his wife driving him down and Johnny Giles coming up from Birmingham, I think it tells you everything about the esteem that Bobby was held in with his fellow players. He was just a wonderful player and a great captain and probably the most influential player to come through the gates.

Derby County manager Gary Rowett.

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