Leeds United’s woeful 2018 continued tonight, as they were comfortably beaten by Preston North End at Deepdale.
There was hope after Kemar Roofe had given Leeds the lead in the first-half. But, soon enough, it all went downhill for Paul Heckingbottom’s men.
Two quick-fire goals from Paul Gallagher and Sean Maguire had Preston in the lead before Alan Browne put the icing on the cake.
Leeds fans were once again left despondent at the result, as the club continue to struggle under the guidance of Heckingbottom.
In fact, quite a lot of Leeds fans believe the team have actually managed to get worse since he took over from Spaniard Thomas Christiansen.
The Danish-born boss was appointed in the summer to replace Garry Monk after a successful spell in Cyprus with APOEL Nicosia. He led Leeds to an excellent start to the season and had them playing an attacking style which fans enjoyed.
But, after a streak of seven games without a win, he got the boot. At the time Leeds had plummeted to 10th in the Championship and were seven points off the play-offs.
Now, under the guidance of former Barnsley boss Heckingbottom, they are 14th, and 14 points off sixth place.
Leeds position has only got worse and, whilst Heckingbottom has had to struggle with injury and suspension problems at the back, he is not succeeding. The failure to win over the players is clear and it is now transcending into the fanbase.
Some Leeds fans are now wishing Christiansen had remained. Others are even suggesting Leeds would be relegation fodder, had it not been for his excellent start to the season.
The fact is, Leeds are now as close positionally to the bottom three, as they are the top six.
Here is some of the best reaction from Twitter to Leeds’ latest loss…
Sometimes I dream that Thomas Christiansen is back at #lufc and life’s all good again.
— Jack Pearson (@JackTPearson) April 9, 2018
— Ole M. Hobberstad (@OleMHobb) April 10, 2018
Leeds sacking Christiansen is looking worse by the second.#LUFC
— Garreth Porter (@PorterG94) April 10, 2018
— Deborah Dakin (@kalavardadeb) April 10, 2018
— Gary Marshall (@Garymarshall_85) April 10, 2018
I never wanted Christiansen gone. Loved him and loved the football under him. Could’ve given him a season and we might have had half a chance of a playoff smash and grab. Shocking from the board. #LUFC
— Adam (@xTippyy) April 10, 2018
— Greg Andrews LUFC (@Greg_01) April 10, 2018
— Leon Solomon (@LeonSolomon1) April 10, 2018
— jake (@jake_lufc1) April 10, 2018
Thomas Christiansen saved us from relegation. ? #lufc
— Marcus Dre (@marcdrye) April 10, 2018
Just shows now how a good job Thomas Christiansen did. Otherwise we would be joining Sunderland for league 1 #LUFC
— Sohail Rashid (@sohailrashid33) April 10, 2018
All you TC outers, where are you now?! Christiansen would have done far better than 2 wins (10 points) from 12 games. Heckingbottom is an awful manager, ludicrous appointment, said it as soon as we were originally linked with him. #lufc
— Super Leeds United (@superlufc1919) April 10, 2018
Leeds United round-up: De Bock interest, O’Kane to Charlton and managerial shortlist
A selection of the latest news and gossip from Leeds United.
De Bock option
Laurens De Bock has an option to head out of Leeds United before the end of the month. The Belgian has struggled to have an impact at Leeds since arriving in January.
The left-back has now dropped down the pecking order at Leeds, with youngster Tom Pearce and summer signing Barry Douglas overtaking him.
According to Voetbal24, he could be heading to Israel. Beitar Jerusalem are said to be keen on the player, where his former manager Guy Luzon is currently working.
Leeds United midfielder Eunan O’Kane could still be heading to Charlton Athletic. The Irish international has been frozen out at Leeds and is expected to leave Elland Road before the end of the month.
League One Charlton, managed by former Leeds midfielder Lee Bowyer, have been linked with a move earlier this month.
Now, as reported by the Yorkshire Post, the Addicks will continue looking for his signature over the next week or so.
Leeds’ managerial shortlist before the start of the season had a number of top names present. Speaking to Gazzetta dello Sport, the Leeds chairman Andrea Radrizzani confirmed that the likes of Antonio Conte, Claudio Ranieri and Roberto Martinez were all considered for the manager role at Elland Road.
Leeds eventually appointed Marcelo Bielsa and his impact has been dramatic and immediate in West Yorkshire.
Leeds United should consider sending Yosuke Ideguchi to KAS Eupen
The Japan international looks unlikely to play a major role at Leeds this season.
Leeds United’s excellent start to the season has been largely down to the management of Marcelo Bielsa. The Argentine has worked wonders with his new players. He even brought in the likes of Mateusz Klich from the cold, with aplomb.
However, another player who spent the second half of last season loaned out elsewhere was Yosuke Ideguchi. So far, the Japanese international has not received a chance under Bielsa.
It looks as though he might be sent out on loan before the end of the month, but interest from these shores looks scarce.
Last season he spent time with Leeds partner club Cultural Leonesa. The two teams have a strong link through director Ivan Bravo and the Aspire Foundation.
But Cultural was a waste of time for Ideguchi. He barely played and they were relegated to the third-tier. The Spanish side are not, however, the only Aspire team in Europe.
KAS Eupen of Belgium’s top-flight also have a connection with Bravo and Aspire. If Leeds want to help Ideguchi get better, perhaps sending him here is a better shout.
Not only would he playing a similar style of football to that in England, but he would be doing so under one of the best central midfielders to play the game in England.
Claude Makelele is the manager at the club. The former Chelsea star would undoubtedly have a lot of knowledge to pass down to a young midfielder.
He would also have the added advantage of a Japanese team-mate. Yuta Toyokawa joined the club in January, amid controversy surrounding an apparent move to Leeds. He is a similar age to the Leeds misfit. Having him around could help the pair settle in their new surroundings.
If Leeds cannot find someone in the UK to take on Ideguchi, then sending him to Eupen looks like being the next best thing.
Marco Bielsa is already setting records at Leeds United, with last season’s team
The turn around at Elland Road in the opening weeks of the season has been remarkable.
Four games into his Leeds United tenure and Marco Bielsa is already setting records with his new team.
After a 2-1 victory over Rotherham on Saturday, the Argentine head coach becomes the first boss at Elland Road to win the club’s first four games at the start of a domestic season, in all competitions.
The standards being set by the 63-year-old since his arrival have been somewhat remarkable with the playing style he has quickly been able to implement proving mesmerising, even to those who are typically opposed to the club.
But, perhaps the most impressive quality about the performances Championship fans are witnessing, is the fact Bielsa has set this record with practically the same team that took to the field, and could only achieve a 13th place finish, last season.
At Elland Road this weekend, the starting XI only contained one summer signing, which just goes to demonstrate the impressive work Bielsa has carried out with the players over the summer period.
Already being referred to as a ‘ready-made Premier League side’, after years of heart break at Elland Road, there will now be a genuine believe that the Whites can return to the English top flight come the end of the season.
Exclusive: George Williams on his Fulham spell, Euro 2016 and two year ambition
We caught up with the former MK Dons and Fulham prospect, now plying his trade for Forest Green.
Exclusive: Christian Doidge discusses new season, career highlights and transfer speculation
The Forest Green Rovers striker spoke to The Boot Room ahead of the 2018/19 campaign.
Exclusive: Cardiff City’s Joe Bennett discusses his new contract; promotion and new signings
The full-back spoke exclusively to The Boot Room as he looks ahead to the Bluebird's top flight return.
Everton20 hours ago
Cenk Tosun is an excellent leaving gift for Everton from Sam Allardyce
Cardiff City16 hours ago
Premier League Team of the Week II: Featuring Manchester City and Chelsea favourites
Newcastle United15 hours ago
Newcastle United summer transfer failure Alassane Pleaa scores hat-trick in 11-1 debut win
Rangers19 hours ago
Three ins and outs Rangers could complete this week
Manchester City9 hours ago
Manchester City’s Benjamin Mendy can break 15-year Premier League assist record
Celtic19 hours ago
Three ins and outs Celtic could complete this week
Wolverhampton Wanderers19 hours ago
Andre Silva shows Wolves what they are missing with hat-trick on Sevilla debut
Leeds United20 hours ago
Victor Orta Leeds United target Alex Gallar scores twice on La Liga debut