Are Liam Cooper's days numbered as new partnership develops?
28 Apr 2021 08:01 am, by Ellandback1
Good Morning. It's Wednesday 28th April, and here are the latest headlines from Elland Road...
Liam Cooper's days numbered as new partnership develops?
Liam Cooper serves his third and final game on the sidelines, suspended for picking up two yellow cards against Manchester City earlier in the month. With a spell on the sidelines, it has allowed the central relationship of Llorente and Struijk to blossom to such a degree that the Scottish International may find it difficult to regain his slot!
Cooper was sent off against Citeh in the closing stages of the first half. Even down to 10 men, Llorente and substitute Struijk soaked up wave after wave of sustained attacks and hung on for 50 minutes conceding just once. A sucker punch in the closing stages from Dallas floored the Blue side of Manchester.
From Champions elect, Leeds then faced Current Champions, Liverpool. Lllorente and Struijk continued where they left off, allowing the reds only seven shots on target; the majority of which were routine saves for Meslier. Just like the Citeh game, the matches finishes 1-1, with Llorente himself grabbing a late equaliser.
Last Sunday the Whites faced their old adversaries Manchester Utd at Elland Road. The Spanish / Dutch centre half pairing were once again put to the test - and they didn't disappoint. They were able to snuff out (along with the excellent Phillips) most signs of danger. A combination of good defending and poor finishing from both sides kept the score at stalemate.
In two and a half games Leeds have conceded twice with Llorente and Strijk at the heart of their defence. It's also fair to say that on paper, there would probably not be a harder series of games to face in the World than Man City, Man Utd and Liverpool, and to concede just twice is a turning point not just from the players, but from Bielsa as well. The 65yo gaffer has shown the World that his side can defend against the best of them.
Where does this leave Cooper? What about Koch. Recent press articles suggest the German International does not have the physical strength needed for the Premiership, and has fallen down the pecking order with Bielsa. Who agree's with this?
Bielsa plotting European course - Matteo
After securing an impressive return to the top flight, former Leeds legend Dominic Matteo believes that Marcelo Bielsa will be plotting a course from LS11 to Europe! The former centre back believes Bielsa has the mentality needed to take the Whites to the next level.
It looks like a Europa League slot might be too much of an ask this season but as a club you’ve got to be looking at the following season and what we can improve on. As a Leeds player, you have to be thinking we need to finish higher next season. Bielsa will be thinking what’s the next step and how do we get this club into Europe. I know it’s early days but a manager like Bielsa will be thinking what’s next. “He’ll want to finish higher and you’ve got to have that mentality.