Three Areas In The Leeds Squad That Need A Major Overhaul In The Summer
It must be quite frustrating to be a Leeds United supporter right now. After a bright start to the 2017/18 campaign, Leeds’ season has taken a turn for the worse since the turn of the year and the Whites are set to finish in the obscurity of the mid-table.
Leeds currently occupy the 14th place in the English second tier with 54 points from 43 games, having just won two games in 2018. With their promotion hopes crashed and burnt once again, it is back to the drawing board for the Yorkshire-based club as they hope to regroup over the summer and devise new plans in order to mount a fresh promotion bid.
The summer transfer window will once again play a major role in how the season pans out for the Whites and ahead of next season, here we take a look at three areas in the Leeds squad that need reinforcement the window opens.
The full-back area has been one of Leeds’ biggest problems this season. With regular right-back Luke Ayling getting ruled out of the season, the Whites were left short of quality options at right-back and had to use Gaetano Berardi in that position, with January signing Laurens De Bock slotting in at left-back.
However, the new signing’s disastrous start to life in Elland Road saw manager Paul Heckingbottom reinstate Berardi on the left and use winger Stuart Dallas as a makeshift right-back in recent fixtures.
While the Northern Irishman has done a decent job, he doesn’t represent a permanent solution for the club and at least one quality full-back is very much the need of the hour for the Whites ahead of the 2018/19 campaign.
Apart from Pontus Jansson, no other Leeds defenders can claim to have had a decent season so far. Captain Liam Cooper has been ill-disciplined and inconsistent, Conor Shaughnessy looked raw before injury ruled him out for the season and it remains to be seen if the club exercise the option of signing on-loan Everton defender Matthew Pennington on a permanent deal.
While the young Paudie O’Connor has shown good signs in the last couple of weeks, it is a no-brainer that Leeds need a solid and experienced central defender in order to mount a serious challenge for promotion.
Leeds’ failure to replace the terrific Chris Wood after his departure has had a major impact on their season. The striker was a prolific goalscorer for the Whites last term and his absence has been certainly felt, with on-loan forward Pierre-Michel Lasogga failing to meet expectations while the likes of Caleb Ekuban and Jay-Ray Grot have been disappointing as well.
A new striker who can hit the ground running would provide Leeds with the necessary impetus at the top.