BBC pundit: This Leeds mainstay has become a problem for Monk (not Jansson)
By Alex Stevens
Noel Whelan is convinced that Pablo Hernandez has become a growing problem for Leeds manager Garry Monk.
The BBC pundit and former Elland Road striker believes there is a growing disparity between Hernandez’s performances home and away for the promotion hopefuls.
The Spanish playmaker had an anonymous match on Saturday evening as the Yorkshire giants succumbed to a 1-0 defeat to Reading.
It ended Leeds’ seven-match unbeaten as they fell to a deserved loss at the Madejski Stadium against their fellow promotion hopefuls due to a splendid first-half strike from Yann Kermorgant.
Whelan identified Hernandez, 31, as one of those who disappointed at Reading in what he is concerned has become a growing trend as he questioned the Spaniard’s place in the starting XI.
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“Hernandez can be an influential player, but, away from home, I can’t pick out the last time he influenced a game too much and really dictated a game from that midfield area.” Whelan told BBC Radio Leeds, as quoted by the BBC Leeds live matchday blog (Saturday, 7.43pm).
“Games like this should suit him – Reading play football – but when he’s not crated or added to proceedings today, would Roofe have been a better option at number ten?
“Hernandez likes to put the ball out wide, then come across the box to get it again. Hernandez wants to create, but Roofe has the intent to score goals.”
Hernandez has been a mainstay of the Leeds side since joining last summer, starting 24 of their 38 Championship matches.
The playmaker has become the team’s main creator, supplying eight league assists in addition to his four goals in the competition.
But Whelan is looking for more from the Spain international, whose main competition for his place comes from Kemar Roofe.
Leeds’ defeat at Reading is not only a blow to their automatic promotion hopes, but also means they drop to fifth in the Championship table.
In other Leeds transfer news, the club have sealed an out-of-window midfielder transfer.