Leeds United manager Paul Heckingbottom must be looking to tie down Pablo Hernandez to the club after the Spanish star’s stats against Reading were revealed.
The Whites were forced to settle for a draw against the Royals at the Madjeski Stadium, in a game which ebbed and flowed this way and that, and saw both sides take the lead, although for Heckingbottom’s men it was for just two minutes.
It was clear to anyone watching that Hernandez, who was returning to the starting XI after featuring from the bench in midweek against Wolves, played a pivotal role for his side, dictating play and helping create attacking opportunities throughout.
However the statistics from his game, as gathered by Twitter account LUFCDATA, show an incredible impact not just in attack but across the entirety of the pitch, chipping in with his defensive duties as well as being a star man in attack.
Pablo Hernandez vs. Reading:
85 mins played
55 touches ????(2nd-most)
5 chances created ????(most)
4 shots ????
2 tackles won
1 goal ⚽
— LUFCDATA (@LUFCDATA) March 10, 2018
The amount of touches made (55) indicate that he is a linchpin to his team mates and that he is used to move play forward and help mould the opportunities to score, with a match-high of five chances created.
However his three clearances, two tackles won, two interceptions and two blocks show just how hard he is willing to work for the side, and that he is still very much dedicated to the cause when others might have thrown the towel in.
His contract is set to expire at the end of the current campaign but displays like this show just how important he is to the side, and replacing him would be a tougher task than Heckingbottom might expect.
Tying him down to a new deal would save all the hassle and money of bringing in a new man, plus when he puts in performances like he did against Reading, he proves is a player worthy of challenging at the top of the Championship.
In other Leeds United news, the club have suffered a senior bombshell with two stars out of action.