Leeds United’s unbeaten run came to an end as they succumbed to a defeat against Fulham who had lost their last three games in a row. It was again one of those games where the Whites didn’t deserve to lose, but that is the nature of football as not grabbing the key moments once again turned out to be the downfall of the Yorkshire club.
Apart from the loss, another thing which must have concerned Leeds United was Pablo Hernandez’s injury. The Spanish playmaker lasted just three minutes and had to go off with an injury. With the busy part of the season going on, the club will hope that it’s not a lengthy injury lay off.
Bielsa updates on Hernandez’s injury
After the game, Bielsa gave a short update (Leeds Live) on the attacker and said that it was a muscular problem that ruled him out of the game. The manager also added that Hernandez is unlikely to recover for the Boxing Day clash against Preston; another one of the teams who are chasing the second spot at the moment.
Why must Bielsa think of rotation?
Hernandez effectiveness has come down this season, but he still remains a crucial player for the Whites in the attacking third. His vision and passing range stand out, but he is being troubled by injuries often now. That was always expected as he is 34 and given the way Bielsa likes to play, Hernandez needs to be used smartly.
Bielsa has not been a fan of rotation ever since he took over, and if left to him, he would probably play with the same eleven every time. He likes to give players a long rope which is a good thing for the confidence of the players as they know that the manager will back them even after some below-par performances. However, the Whites should be making use of their squad to tackle this busy phase of the season.
Who will replace him?
The time frame of Hernandez’s injury is yet to be ascertained, so the team management and club faithful would be keeping their fingers crossed. Hernandez hs been deployed in central areas in the past few games with Helder Costa starting on the right. Jamie Shackleton and Adam Forshaw have also been unavailable, so Bielsa is running thin on central/attacking midfield options.
Mr. versatile Stuart Dallas has already been used in the middle this season, and he will be expected to fill in again for Hernandez. Dallas hasn’t done too poorly, but it is clear that he is at his best when he plays in the wide regions and has some space to run with the ball. Hopefully, the Northern Irish international will do a decent enough job against Preston.
Sports Management Graduate. Wannabe sports manager/writer and researcher. If not found disscussing about sports, will be seen talking about movies or tv shows. Miserable rest of the times.