Leeds United started December in the perfect fashion after seeing off Yorkshire rivals Sheffield United at Bramall Lane last Saturday, with Pablo Hernandez scoring the only goal of the game.
That victory, accompanied by West Brom’s draw on Monday, has given Leeds a four-point cushion over the third-placed Baggies heading into the busy festive season – and means that Marcelo Bielsa’s side have won their last four Championship matches without conceding.
Injury issues have tested the depth of Bielsa’s squad this season and it has allowed a number of fringe players to make an impression, with 18-year-old Jack Clarke amongst those to benefit – and he has grabbed his opportunities with both hands.
The teenager has excelled with cameo performances off the bench and many fans are calling for him to get a chance from the start in place of Ezgjan Alioski, with the debate taken up a notch by a statistical comparison shared on social media.
We have gathered some of the reactions on the pair below.
The fact that Clarkes appearances have been in the second half makes a difference though, when other players are tiring
— Ricky Block ???????? (@richardblock24) December 3, 2018
Excited by what Clarke has to offer. However, I think his impact lessens over a full 90 mins so would still expect to see him subbed on/off
— AStod94 (@AStod94) December 3, 2018
I love Allioski’s passion on the pitch. He’s an amazing footballer. But Jack Clarke must start the next game based on current form
— Sahan Dias (@SahanDiasG) December 3, 2018
This is a stupid post. Bielsa knows better than us. We’re second in the league, why we are going out of our way as fan base to destroy one of our own players confidence is unbelievable
— Jack Stanworth (@JackStannyy) December 3, 2018
Bielsa knows best! He will nurture Jack in the right way. Don’t like all the Alioski knockers – Bielsa obviously believes in him and he always gives 100%. It’s a team effort and no one deserves the negativity coming from some quarters.
— Linda (@HGWhites) December 3, 2018
Has to start next game surely
— Martin Roan (@MartinRoan83) December 3, 2018
Last one (take on’s) most telling here for me. Don’t think I’ve ever seen Alioski take a defender on. Ever.
— Jezaldinho (@Jezaldinho) December 3, 2018
I’d start Clarke against one of the bottom teams to see if he has 90 in him but wouldnt risk losing his impact off the bench if it’s a must win game
— Steven Ross (@steross769) December 3, 2018
This post shows we have strength in depth, it shows Clarke is more than capable of stepping in when Alioski is in need of a rest/injured.
— Jamie ???? Clarke (@JamieClarkeIPA) December 3, 2018
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