Leeds United is currently facing a difficult situation as their Premier League survival chances seem to be dwindling with each passing game. With only seven games left to play, they are just two points above the relegation zone. Their recent performances have been disappointing, suffering two heavy defeats against Crystal Palace and Liverpool at Elland Road, causing many to wonder if their season is falling apart at the worst possible time.
Just two weeks ago, Leeds seemed to have turned a corner by climbing out of the bottom three after defeating Nottingham Forest. However, their recent results have been dire, putting their survival prospects in jeopardy.
What’s even more frustrating for Leeds fans is that this season was meant to be different. Chairman Andrea Radrizzani was confident that the club would avoid another nail-biting relegation escape like last season’s against Brentford. Yet, here we are, with the club once again facing a familiar predicament.
While Javi Gracia has shown his ability to organize the team and secure wins, recent matches have brought up concerns about team selection, tactics, and substitutions. The team also lacks leadership on the pitch when the going gets tough, with captain Liam Cooper being a peripheral figure under Gracia, who was once a crucial part of the team. Furthermore, injuries to Max Wober and Tyler Adams have had a significant impact, and Wilfried Gnonto, who had a bright start to the season, has been dropped from the starting lineup.
Despite the tactical improvements under Gracia, the team has lost some of its intensity, making them more vulnerable to counter-attacks. Additionally, the signings made during the January transfer window have yet to make a significant impact, apart from Wober. Record signing Georginio Rutter has been struggling to find his place in the team.
It’s ironic that Cody Gakpo, the player that Leeds almost signed last summer, scored the first goal against them at Elland Road in the last game. Despite their recent heavy defeats, the fans remain loyal to the team and could play a crucial role in helping the players recover from their setbacks.
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has criticized Leeds’ defenders and goalkeeper Illan Meslier, calling them “really, really poor” and stating that they make “big mistakes every time we see them play.” However, Leeds has the potential to bounce back, but time is running out for them to do so and prove their critics wrong.