Now the deal for Laurens De Bock is over the line it’s time we moved on and made sure we give ourselves the best opportunity possible in the second half of the season. If we stay how we are I think it’s fair to say the struggle is real and play-offs may be beyond us yet again. In fact if you look at the current depth and month we have in February we may find ourselves chasing the pack.
Where do we need players?
First and foremost we need some players who can get us goals. Kemar Roofe is doing a fine job leading the line but it feels like he’s on his own at the moment. An injury or suspension to him, even a dip in form and we have only two options to fall back on, Pierre-Michel Lasogga and Jay-Roy Grot. Double barrel names but single barrel fire power currently. Frustrating as he is, Lasogga is the best option of the two, Grot shouldn’t really be near the first-team currently. Lasogga is a good player, his attitude and work-rate leave so much to the imagination that you find yourself wondering how he was on the brink of a Germany call-up a few years back.
We need a player in this area desperately. Caleb Ekuban is more than a good option but we don’t know when he will return, and once he does it will be a case of easing him back in for some time given his injury issues this season, so we can almost count him out for the rest of the season. I have actually found myself looking into the development squad the last few weeks and wondering if any would be able to make some sort of impact in the first-team. There aren’t any that have had the time in any first-team situation barring Mallik Wilks and the chances are that he is still some way off, he has started for the development side today and may head out on loan again.
We have to get a striker in.
the debate about central midfielders is by far the largest amongst Leeds fans. You have the most discussed player in Kalvin Phillips. No matter what I write about him after a game there are people who are massively unhappy. If I think he’s played well then I’m told he’s useless and did nothing, isn’t good enough and shouldn’t be near the side. If I think he’s played poor then I get the exact opposite, fans think he’s used as a scapegoat and is a crucial and underrated player. That tells you how split fans are regarding him. Ronaldo Vieira is probably the only cert in as a starter that the majority agree on, then you have Eunan O’Kane who started the season on fire and has faded, and Mateusz Klich who doesn’t seem to be in the plans of Thomas Christiansen.
For me getting a player in would be a huge bonus. We struggle to keep the ball more often than not and we can become overrun in the middle of the pitch throughout a game with little resistance. Conor Shaughnessy was played there away at Birmingham which was a poor call but Christiansen and it highlighted our need for more players in this area. Signing Yosuke Ideguchi doesn’t help because he has been loaned straight to Cultural Leonesa for the rest of the season. Personally I was intrigued by the Adam Clayton links, I think a player who can hold onto the ball and decrease and increase tempo is what we need.
We have options in the wide areas but options that are beginning to struggle. Gjanni Alioksi is probably the first choice winger and it’s fair to say his form is erratic. You can never question how hard he works for the team but if he isn’t in a game in the final third then he literally doesn’t impact the game in the slightest. Stuart Dallas is injured and when he will return is anyone’s guess, then keeping him fit is the next step. Hadi Sacko has barely featured all season and Pawel Cibicki, who started his career with a few good games at Leeds has totally gone off the boil, the last few games he’s played has been a struggle, he actually failed to look like he wanted to be there at Burton, Birmingham or Newport which is a worry.