Noel Whelan has ripped into Sam Allardyce’s tactics and substitutions after watching West Brom capitulate against Leeds United.
The former Leeds striker and lifelong fan of the Whites, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, believes the Baggies were far too defensive in their approach and that the 66-year-old failed to give his players a chance of getting back into the game.
In the first meeting between the two automatic promotion winners from last season, Leeds ran riot as they built up a 4-0 lead before the half-time whistle.
Allardyce took off winger Matt Phillips for defender Branislav Ivanovic for the second half, as a goal from Raphinha secured a 5-0 win for Marcelo Bielsa’s men.
Whelan has hugely critical of the Baggies boss for his tactics and in-game decisions and suggested there was a worrying lack of balance to his squad.
Whelan told Football Insider: “I do believe that we do have a better team and a better squad and I don’t really care what manager takes the place of Slaven Bilic – he should never have gone in the first place – but Big Sam’s tactics were absolutely shocking really.
“You’re defending at home, you’re not really attacking, even when you’re 3-0 down, you’ve still got a chance to change it but his substitutions were defensive. They had no way of stopping the Leeds United attack and it was a gulf in class, let’s be honest.
“He doesn’t really have a balance there, in my opinion – you’re trying to hit teams on the counter-attack and I think we wore them out with side-to-side passing, keeping the ball.
“Yes, they did very well against Liverpool but when you’re at home, you’ve got to be a bit braver.
“When you’re 2-0, 3-0 down, you don’t bring on a defensive player, you’ve got to go for it because the next goal is crucial – 4-0 down at halftime, there was no change to their tactics whatsoever.”