Heckingbottom explains decision that made Leeds fans go berserk ahead of loss v Norwich
Paul Heckingbottom has explained that it was never his intention to put Leeds wonderkid Ryan Edmondson on the bench against Norwich on Saturday, even though the young striker had travelled with the squad.
Edmondson, 16, has been in lethal form for the development sides this season and he was suspended for an Under-18s semi-final on Saturday, meaning that Heckingbottom included him in the travelling part to Carrow Road.
However when the team news was released prior to kick-off, fans went berserk after they learned that Edmondson had not even been named on the bench.
After seeing his side let slip of a lead to lose 2-1, Heckingbottom revealed why he overlooked the teenage sensation.
“Wasn’t going to put him on the bench. He was down about being suspended for the under-18s, but this was a good opportunity to keep his head up and get him in with the first-team squad,” he said, as quoted by Leeds-Live.
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Leeds’ season is over and it has been for a long time. As a club that has a proud history of developing young talents, why is Heckingbottom giving the same old underachievers game time when there are so many young, hungry players who have been in good form as of late? Calling up Bailey Peacock-Farrell, Paudie O’Connor and Tom Pearce has let to impressive performances, so why not call upon young attackers too? If anything there’s less risk in picking a young striker than a young defender or goalkeeper. It really is baffling that someone like Pierre-Michel Lasogga, who will be off in a couple of weeks, is still getting into this team.