Raphinha was a “huge miss” for Leeds United as Helder Costa struggled against Liverpool, according to Alan Hutton.
The former Aston Villa defender, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the 27-year-old looked terrified by the likes of Andy Robertson bursting past him down the flank at Elland Road.
Costa started against the Reds in the absence of the injured Raphinha but was replaced by Ian Poveda shortly after the hour mark.
Costa fell out of favour under Marcelo Bielsa earlier this season, playing just three times between November and January.
However, he has failed to feature in all but three of Leeds’ last 13 league fixtures.
He has a total of 12 top-flight starts from 21 appearances under his belt.
Hutton admitted he was not impressed by what he saw from the Portugal international on Monday night.
He suggested the winger’s poor display proved how much Leeds were missing Raphinha on the wing.
Hutton told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge: “He switched off quite a number of times.
“After the goal in the first half, where he switched off, it was difficult for him to regain that confidence. He was alway checking over his shoulder to see where Robertson was, terrified about him, so it was a difficult night for him.
“He’s had a difficult time there, he’s come in, then he’s out, then he’s back in and asked to do a job. It can be difficult. Raphinha was an absolutely huge miss.
“He’s the type of guy that pushes the full-backs the other way. As a full-back, Robertson or whoever would be more worried about him.
“That’s what he gives you going forward and you just see how much they miss him when he’s not playing.”