Leeds United: This is a bad situation that needs turning around in west London - Whelan

Sam Byram
Sam Byram
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Leeds have not won in seven months at Elland Road which is bad enough in itself. That’s a terrible stat.

But the fact we are not scoring enough goals and the fact we are conceding goals too regularly is unacceptable – as a bunch of players, as a management group, as a club. Something has got to change. There’s too many times where it’s too easy for teams to be scoring against us and Brighton’s first goal was terrible is it was their first attack. They cut right through us very easily and we can’t afford to keep going one goal down.

Yes, the performance was a lot better than it has been and Chris Wood’s missed header could have been a game-changer really. If we’d have gone 2-1 up then it may have been a different story. But those little mistakes are still there and they are still costing us.


Formation-wise, we are playing with a lone striker with technically two wingers and you are looking for support really from your two midfield players in Alex Mowatt and Lewis Cook. I thought Cook again had a fantastic game.

If you introduce this formation right then it can be effective and I think we controlled the midfield very well though I thought Adeyemi’s first 45 minutes was a poor 45 minutes but maybe that’s because of him not being in the team. But I’m not too sure if we should go 4-4-2 because when I looked at us going 4-4-2 we didn’t control the midfield and Brighton came into it when we went 4-4-2. The formation just kind of went and the substiutions weren’t effective.

Will Buckley came on and did nothing. He didn’t really get into the pace of the game and he wasn’t going past players. When you are making your substitutions you want them to be dynamic, to come on and make a difference and I just didn’t feel that any of the substitutions made a difference.

It was a bit of bad luck with Liam Cooper getting injured as you are trying to change the game. I felt some of Uwe Rosler’s substiutions were positive ones such as bringing Antenucci on for Mowatt but I just felt the one that was wrong was Byram on for Botaka. I felt that wasn’t the right substitution as Botaka was taking care of two of their men at times because they were scared of him. He was the one that looked like he was opening doors because he had the tricks and the energy.

There was nothing there to suggest that was a good substitution. I know he has been away with internationals and I know Dallas has but don’t tell me these people aren’t fit enough and young enough to play the full game for your club. And club is more important than country.

Scott Wootton got the nod over Sam Byram at right-back and if you’re telling me that Scott Wootton is a better defender than Sam Byram, yes he’s a better centre-half than Sam. Sam will admit that along with Wootton. But if you are asking Sam Byram is Scott Wootton a better right-back than him I would believe that Sam Byram would have something to say about that. Yes, he hasn’t been playing there all the time but you don’t lose certain things about your game.

He can still defend, he’s still got pace. And if you are going to start giving someone a bit of confidence then you’ve got to start playing people in the right positions and that’s not Scott Wootton’s position. He’s a centre-half by trade and Sam Byram is a right-back by trade. Play them in their positions.

I’m sure there are people saying Rosler should go now but I don’t believe that’s the solution.

I think you need to give him a bit more time and I still think that it’s too early to get the jury in on him.

Yes, things aren’t going to plan but this is where your managerial skills come into play. He’s got to go back to the drawing board with the team, he’s got to roll his sleeves up and this is where you show your character.

And the players have got to look in the mirror and really say ‘am I putting in enough?’ ‘Am I doing enough to help the team?’

We can’t always look at managers and we’ve sometimes got to look at players.

Sometimes it’s the players out there crossing the white line and not doing their job properly. Everyone needs to stand up now and be counted for. This is a bad situation and it needs turning around on Wednesday night at Fulham.