Leeds United, despite years of disappointment, emerged as one of the prime promotion contenders this term under Marcelo Bielsa, the famous Argentine who redefined their identity implementing an exciting brand of football. But the fierce fight high up the table kept the race wide open, and the Whites had a tricky challenge at the Hawthorns against mighty West Brom to reclaim the top of the table spot. An emphatic comeback win against Millwall guided Norwich City to go three points clear on top whereas a routine victory over Wigan Athletic saw Middlesbrough getting past Leeds by a solitary point for the time being. The Baggies, meanwhile, were having a rough run but hit back sensationally this evening claiming a thumping 4-1 win and made their way back in ‘top six’ before the international break.
Below are the Leeds United players rated in their shambolic defeat against West Bromwich Albion.
Bailey Peacock-Farrell: 4
Made a couple of decent stops but was at fault in the first two of West Brom’s goals which made the supporters furious and frustrated following some erroneous performances by the young custodian.
Stuart Dallas: 6
Was forced to be deployed in a makeshift right-back role following the injury woe of Luke Ayling. The Northern Irishman did not deliver an overwhelming display but made his best efforts to maintain his defensive duties and also tried his luck from a distance with desperate attempts to script a comeback against the hosts.
Pontus Jansson: 5.5
Had a dominating first-half despite relentless pressure from Hal Robson-Kanu and Jay Rodriguez up front. Struggled aerially against set-pieces at times, particularly after the break and failed to contain the constant threats that led the Whites conceding four times in the second half.
Liam Cooper: 5.5
Was combative at the back but his tackles were clumsy at times and lost a few duels against the physicality of Robson-Kanu and the link-up play between Rodriguez, Harvey Barnes and Matt Phillips.
Barry Douglas: 6.5
Was the most influential Leeds player on the pitch in the first half as the Scotsman not only earned stability at the back but also made overlapping runs, whipped in crosses from the left and also combined well with Alioski before being replaced by Jack Harrison midway through the second half.
Kalvin Phillips: 4.5
An evening to forget for the youngster as he failed to stop the hosts from operating effortlessly in and around Leeds’ defensive third. Succeeded with tackles and had some no-nonsense clearances but could not build the game up from deep down the midfield.
Pablo Hernandez: 6
Tried to threaten from right midfield but the final delivery let the Spaniard down throughout the evening. He scored one consolation goal in closing seconds with a looping header from substitute Saiz’s smart ball.
Adam Forshaw: 6.5
Looked purposeful with his passes, through balls and efforts from a distance. Switched the game on the flanks many times but could not find the right option on the majority of occasions.
Mateusz Klich: 4.5
One of their most influential resources this term but his error helped the Albion double their lead midway through the second half. Matt Phillips snatched possession from the Poland international and found the net from 25 yards out. Was replaced by Samuel Saiz late in the game.
Ezgjan Alioski: 6
Was impressive from the left flank as he kept on whipping in crosses and creating chances from the wide. However, a lack of inventiveness high up the pitch saw his efforts go in vain.
Kemar Roofe: 4.5
In-form Roofe had a disappointing outing against his boyhood side and was at fault in West Brom’s opener minutes into the second half. He should have stayed on his feet but opted to go down inside the box. The referee rightly called off a penalty appeal, and the Baggies broke the deadlock from a counter-attacking movement seconds later. Was replaced by Tyler Roberts at around the 66th-minute mark.
Tyler Roberts: 5
The teenager replaced Roofe to feature against his former club but could not guide the Whites to stage a comeback despite a few promising runs.
Jack Harrison: 5
Was brought in place of Douglas to add more strength high up the pitch. The Manchester City loanee, however, failed to make any noteworthy contribution and let the gaffer down once again despite joining Leeds in the summer with high expectations.
Samuel Saiz: 6.5
Replaced Klich late in the game and made some positive impact. Found Hernandez with a clever delivery and his compatriot pulled back one in closing seconds as consolation.