Noel Whelan claims Leeds United “could still be playing now and they would not have scored” after the defeat to Cardiff on Sunday.

The former Elland Road striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, rued Marcelo Bielsa’s side’s “woeful” crossing and final product at the Cardiff City Stadium.

Leeds had 69 per cent possession against the Bluebirds but failed to convert such dominance into opportunities and only registered three shots on target.

By contrast Cardiff created three great chances over the 90 minutes, two of which were scored.

Junior Hoilett opened the scoring after 35 minutes and substitute Robert Glatzel doubled the host’s lead midway through the second half to compound Leeds to a 2-0 loss on their Championship return.

When asked by Football Insider what went wrong in the Welsh capital, Whelan said: “It is not the start we wanted but we knew it was going to be a difficult game.

“Neil Harris sides are always organised and difficult to break down – that proved to be the case on Sunday.

“It was an even game with rustiness from both teams in terms of passing. After 25 minutes Leeds starting to turn the screw and dominate possession but you have got to punish them. Leeds United did not do that.

“The crossing was woeful and we looked very powderpuff in the 18-yard box.

“I think we could still been playing now and they would not have scored.”

Leeds were rocked by the injury to Pablo Hernandez in the build-up to Sunday’s game.

The attacking midfielder, who is so often the creative spark in Bielsa’s side, will be in contention to face Fulham this weekend.

In other Leeds United news, Noel Whelan gives his assessment of Ian Poveda’s first-team debut.

PLUS: Subscribe for free to our brilliant new YouTube channel for daily videos, interviews with our top pundits and special guests, and all the latest insight into the club you love.