Yep, it’s that time again. Scott Robson with the much imitated, but never matched, True Faith player ratings from a tough day in Yorkshire. Honest, passionate, and fabulously wry. You won’t agree, but that’s the point.
Nick Pope – 9
Every time I do the player ratings, Pope gets the standard six or seven because he’s had nothing to do. Today he did have something to do .
The penalty save was essential to us getting anything out of the game. Can you imagine us two nil down ? Bamford’s body language said to me he was never scoring that penalty, but Pope got there and was straight up for the rebound, like every good goalkeeper should, and Pope is a good goalkeeper.
Conceded in a similar scenario, but THAT missed pen was the game changer and Pope was right at the heart of it.
Kieran Trippier – 6
Two free kicks summed up his day. The one in the first half which wasn’t far away from Shelvey saving our soul on the same ground last year, but was as different as night and day. And the second after the Junior red card which clipped the wall’s ankles. Both were terrible.
Trippier will know that today wasn’t his best, though, and expect some reaction on Thursday. That’s the difference between then and now, and any dissenters tonight should really remember that.
Dan Burn – 6
I don’t know who Burn thought he was supposed to be marking for the first Leeds goal, but it certainly wasn’t who he was supposed to be. Away from home against opposition who don’t just sit and let us take the piss (hello, Leicester), Burn looks very uncomfortable.
Not the worst at the back, mind you, but did face the ignominy of running 60 yards to take a first half throw only for Willock and Trippier (I think ) to take it and leave him standing like he wasn’t from Blyth, but somewhere nearby, without the buses or shops, like Bebside or Cambois (SE Northumberland fans know what I’m on about here).
Fabian Schär – 7
Almost had me hitting the ceiling when he connected cleanly with that second half volley but like everything today it was almost too good.
Today was about getting dragged down to Leeds’ level and Schär’s classy out from the back wasn’t really suited to Elland Road.
Pass of the day though from left to right in the first half.
Sven Botman – 6
It seems he is fallible, after all. We put Villa (Nottingham Forest, even ) down to an aberration, but today Botman looked out of his comfort zone. He didn’t look himself against Arsenal in my opinion, but today, against far inferior opposition, he looked like a rabbit in the headlights.
I remember him going for a tackle (which he was pulled up for) fifteen yards inside the Leeds half and thinking why’s he going for that?
A far cry from the player who was as hard to get past as the Berlin Wall from 1961-1989 for most of the season. Rodrigo seemed a massive problem, which is strange because he looked really bad. Just shows you.
Joelinton – 6
Seemed to steam into loads of challenges in the first ten minutes and first half he looked decent, but second half? This was the quietest spell I’ve seen Joelinton since the spell we don’t now talk about.
You know, like the time you went to Rochdale and tried to get past the non-existent steward to tell him how he wasn’t fit to wear the shirt? First half good, second half, no.
Bruno Guimarães – 6
Booked for simulation, for which, if he was a player in the nineties, he would have had his union membership annulled and burned at the stake. Being honest? Bruno didn’t live up to expectations again.
The words flying around about him being injured or that Longstaff’s injury isn’t helping him only go so far. If he’s injured, don’t play him. Today he never recovered from a classic Allardyce tactic of hit him early and let him know you’re here.
As time goes on United’s best player will face this every week. Thus starts the next chapter. Can he take this every week?
Joe Willock – 6
When he picked the ball up on the left, dropped the shoulder, and did that thing that we’ve all done at five a side where you push it round and run the other side, I thought this is it . Unfortunately, one bad touch later and it summed up Willock’s day.
I thought he did alright but after that first half clash of knees, he got involved with all the carry on too much. Inevitable he was coming off. He knew it, we knew it.
Miguel Almirón – 7
That whipped curling effort which Robles apparently had covered sums up life right now for our Paraguayan amigo. In the autumn that shot nestles in the corner, we win 4-1, and everyone laughs at Leeds for going down and having to change trains 25 times to get to Plymouth. Except it flew wide.
Could have been booked for diving (see Bruno) but also didn’t look fit, which begs the question, where was Murphy?
Callum Wilson – 8
He was talking about ruthlessness in that podcast he does with Antonio through the week and how he wouldn’t let anyone else take a penalty. On a hat trick or not. Now you see why.
Unnerving skill and pressure of a bloke with confidence flowing through his body right now. For me, a massive mistake taking him off when we did. Surely Wilson on the pitch can do more damage to a glass-like Leeds defence than on the bench. Seventeen now for the season: twenty will surely come and with that a Newcastle champions league place.
Alexander Isak- 7
Already you can see the naysayers queuing up and saying Isak can’t play with Wilson. They are wrong, it just needs tinkering. Isak is far too left from Wilson, and you totally negate the Swede when he’s like that. No side is going to be as accommodating as Everton were on the left .
That won’t happen again. Get him playing off the Wilson shoulder barges and shithouse tactics. Won the pen and looked dangerous but looked stuck between a rock and a hard place at times.
Anthony Gordon, for Almirón 72 minutes – 6. A few neat touches but couldn’t really add any gloss to the away fans’ rendition of the White Stripes’ classic. I really thought he would make an impact as well.
Allan Saint Maximin, for Wilson 72 minutes – 6. Looked a mile offside but for one beautiful moment it was 3-1 , we can all go home, and Leeds are down and much hilarity. Had me shouting various expletives, however, when he put a cross straight out late in injury time. Nothing changes with good old Maxi.
Elliot Anderson, for Willock 87 minutes – 6. When I saw him warming up, I thought. ‘Go on son, score the winner. This is your chance to avoid going to Barnsley on loan next year’. I was almost begging him. To no avail.
The Pitch Invader – 0. One for the sheer balls of doing it , but instantly brought back to the zero by the science of this. 52,000 people watched Steve Bruce for what seemed like an eternity and not one ran on with a light brown hoody and confronted him. On that evidence, Judge, send him down.