Leicester City 3 Leeds United 1: Wiedwald, Hernandez and Cibicki - Talking Points

INFLUENTIAL: Pablo Hernandez, left, advertised his claims for a regular starting berth. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.
INFLUENTIAL: Pablo Hernandez, left, advertised his claims for a regular starting berth. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.
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AFTER seeing Leeds United exit the Carabao Cup with a 3-1 defeat at Premier Division hosts Leicester City, Lee Sobot looks at a few key talking points from Tuesday night’s fourth round clash at the King Power.

Felix Wiedwald

Wiedwald was given a chance to enhance his claims to start after his recent indecisive displays which have seen the German deposed as United’s no 1 goalkeeper by the experienced Andy Lonergan.

But the German put in another unconvincing performance with the 27-year-old’s poor clearance leading to Leicester’s opening goal at a time when United were well on top.

The custodian still looked shaky afterwards with Wiedwald very indecisive when it came to coming off his line.

With Lonergan continuing to impress in United’s league games, Wiedwald looks highly unlikely to be returning to the first team any time soon if Lonergan maintains his good form and solid displays.

Has Pablo Hernandez done enough to warrant a start against Sheffield United?

Head coach Thomas Christiansen stressed that the players brought into the side for Tuesday night’s cup tie had an opportunity to force their way into his regular starting line up and Hernandez was top of the list of those to impress.

The experienced Spaniard led by example upon being handed the captain’s armband with the 32-year-old scoring a peach of an opening goal and looking United’s main threat for the rest of the night.

Christiansen has the option of playing Hernandez in the no 10 role or out wide but it would be harsh to drop Samuel Saiz, Gjanni Alioski or Kalvin Phillips based on their displays in Saturday’s 3-0 win at Bristol City in which Phillips played the no 10 role.

As such, Hernandez may again have to settle for a place on the bench for Friday night’s Elland Road clash with Sheffield United though the Spaniard is clearly pushing hard for a regular start.

Pontus Jansson was also given a chance to advertise his claims for winning back his spot at centre-back but Jansson failed to really shine alongside centre-back partner Conor Shaughnessy.

Everton loanee Matthew Pennington and captain Liam Cooper seem certain to start Friday night’s clash against the Blades.

Can Pawel Cibicki cut it for Leeds?

Cibicki was another of those handed a rare start against Leicester but the summer recruit from Malmo failed to make any impression and the Swede was not surprisingly substituted for Hadi Sacko midway through the second half after a rather anonymous display.

Rather like Jay-Roy Grot and Mateusz Klich, Cibicki still has plenty to learn when it comes to the English game and on Tuesday’s evidence, Cibicki is still some way short of what United need.

He will likely find opportunitues hard to come by in the coming weeks.

Klich looked steady enough without exactly screaming for a start while Grot showed some decent touches in the first half before rather fading after the break.

How long will Cameron Borthwick-Jackson be out for?

Manchester United loanee Borthwick-Jackson was given a rare start at left back with Gaetano Berardi suspended and the 20-year-old had a decent enough first half but then picked up an ankle injury.

Borthwick-Jackson was taken off at half-time for Luke Ayling and the extent of his injury remains to be seen.

With Berardi still banned for the next two games, Ayling and Vurnon Anita will continue to occupy the full back roles.