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Leeds’ injury crisis showing they should have pushed harder for Kyle Bartley

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Leeds United

Leeds’ injury crisis showing they should have pushed harder for Kyle Bartley

As the likes of Gaetano Berardi and Luke Ayling have been struck down by injury to add to a long list of absentees for Leeds United, it’s clear to see that the Whites should have gambled on a move for West Brom’s Kyle Bartley in the summer.

The Yorkshire Evening Post recognised the club’s interest in bringing back the former loanee on a permanent deal from Swansea City but they pondered for too long and saw the commanding defender move to West Brom for £4 million.

Such a fee would have looked a sound investment compared to the £10 million reportedly paid to Middlesbrough to bring Patrick Bamford to Elland Road.

LEEDS, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 24: Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa shouts instructions to his team from the technical area during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Ipswich Town at Elland Road on October 24, 2018 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Alex Dodd – CameraSport via Getty Images)

Now with defensive options thin on the ground, Marcelo Bielsa may be wishing that he had Bartley, who has been one of his new club’s star performers this season, among his squad.

 

The 27-year-old had missed just three minutes of Championship action until he served a suspension as the Baggies lost 1-0 to Hull City this weekend.

Such reliability and consistency at the back is exactly what Leeds are missing and it seems that the decision not to insist upon his signing could be the difference between promotion or just missing out.

Sam is a football journalist focusing on English football at all levels and Spanish football. He also writes for Spain's biggest daily sports newspaper, MARCA, as well as The Boot Room. Find Sam on Twitter at @samleveridge.

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