Looks like there are changes coming at Elland Road, but not in the area you’d first think of.
As Phil Hay writes in his latest article on The Athletic, it is possible that Marcelo Bielsa will be looking for changes out wide rather than upfront going forward, and that’s the area I want to address. In particular, I want to talk about someone who hasn’t quite lived up to his expectations based off of last season, and that’s Jack Harrison.
Other than his goal on the first day of the season against Bristol City, Harrison hasn’t contributed anything in terms of hard figures, and whilst there are some fans out there who will talk about his ‘work-rate’, which although I agree with them on, I just feel that he needs to offer a lot more than that and actually start giving us some tangible numbers to look at, a bit like last year.
Last year wasn’t a stellar year in terms of figures for Harrison, with just four goals and four assists in all competitions, but I can cut him some slack because he was new to the team and needed time to adjust. However, after a year in the Bielsa system, I’d expect him to hit the ground running and be doing a lot better than he has so far this season.
I have said before that I think Helder Costa is someone that is being bedded in slowly as a replacement for Pablo Hernandez, who at 34 and going into the final year of his contract could be on his way out the door at Elland Road come the end of the season.
However, if Jack Harrison can’t quite produce at the same level as he did last season, then I think it is worth us having the debate about whether or not we need to give him a spell on the substitutes bench for a while and give Costa his opportunity to shine, as he has done in previous seasons in the Championship with Wolves.
What about you? Is it fair to say that Jack Harrison hasn’t really lived up to expectations so far this season and needs to be dropped? Or do you think that he still needs a little bit more time before we pull the plug?