Vital Leeds United contributor erni was at the Leeds v Oxford United Capital One League Cup clash at Elland Road on Tuesday night and he gives his views on the player`s performance in the 3-0 win.
He did not have much to do but dealt with crosses, corners and what shots he had easily. Looks a great back up.
Tom Lees 8
Played with confidence at right back and was operating as a winger at times. Scored a very good goal and never looked in trouble. He looks fitter and stronger than last season as well.
Jason Pearce 7
Cruised through the game in second gear and apart from one slip was never troubled. Another good signing.
Paddy Kisnorbo 5
Caught for pace several times and while he did not have a shocker he looks a shadow of the defender we knew. Definitely not fit yet so let`s hope 90 minutes under his belt helps him as he is still good on the ball when he has time.
Adam Drury 7
Impressive home debut for a no frills old-fashioned left back. Cannot remember him being beaten at all and his passing was good but he does not venture too far up field.
Aiden White 7
One of Aidy’s better games and he really came on strong last 20 minutes, running with the ball. Obviously looking for a goal and missed teammates in great positions late on for simple passes. He provided Austin with assist for first goal.
Austin 9 Mann of the Match
He was a colossus last night going forward with the ball. He scored a great opening goal to calm the nerves and ran the show all night. His tackling was crisp and he left the Oxford midfield for dead going forward. What a great signing.
Michael Brown 5
He kept getting caught wrong side of opposition midfield and work as he did, he could not catch them afterwards and Austin kept bailing him out. Made a shocker of a tackle first half, which neither official got a good view of and he could have been off on another day.
Sam Byram 8.5
He slotted into right midfield as though he had played there all his short career. He had time on the ball, picked out good passes, ran intelligently into space for passes and always looks a goal threat. His goal was as good as we will see all season at Elland Road. Controlled the ball instantly, beat two defenders on the turn and chipped the keeper. An absolute peach. Glad he has signed an extended contract as this lad is worth real money.
Does what he does well. Rarely wastes a ball and plays with his head up. Played at half pace last night and drifted out of the game at times but worth his place.
Andy Gray 5
I cannot remember him having the ball at his feet first half. More involved in second half but he didn`t really hold the ball and looked off the pace, but another that 90 minutes will do good.
Dominic Poleon 6
Not a lot of time to show what he can do but he was lively and looks strong and confident. Made one good run where the ball looked like it was tied to his bootlaces. I would like to see him get more game time.
Zac Thompson 6
He looked calm and assured but not a lot of time to do himself justice.
On for 15 seconds so Byram could walk off to applause
Neil Warnock shuffled his pack bringing in Ashdown, playing Tom Lees at right back, Kisnorbo at centre half; White left midfield, Byram right midfield and Andy Gray and El Hadji Diouf in attack.
Smallish crowd of 13k+ reported but anybody at the game could see there were more than that with the Kop full, West Stand full and East Stand 3/4 full. ???
A very organised and efficient performance against disappointing opposition, who were never allowed a foothold in the game.
Byram`s performance in midfield must give Warnock some thoughts with Varneys performances being so poor and I would keep Drury at left back.
Both Brown and Kisnorbo need to improve a lot to be considered for a starting role and Andy Gray looks miles off a starting place although he was left without support a lot.
Warnock says Norris has a slight injury, which is why he wasn`t included in the squad, and despite this Pugh still didn`t make it so we have to assume his days are numbered.
We arrived at 19.05 to buy tickets on the night and the queue was the full length of the West stand and curling round the North.
We got our tickets at 19.45, the queue was still the length of the West Stand, and people were still coming in half an hour after kick off. I will not do that again.
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