What we've been waiting for: Whelan verdict on Roberts future after Leeds latest
Tyler Roberts’ superb performance against Chelsea was the exception that proved the rule – he must show his talent more often to stay at Leeds United.
That is according to ex-Leeds star and lifelong fan Noel Whelan, speaking exclusively to Football Insider after Roberts’ all-action display at Elland Road against the Champions League hopefuls.
The match finished 0-0, though that could have been different had the 22-year-old’s eighth-minute strike not been ruled out for an offside in the build-up.
Roberts – who was starting his fifth successive match for Leeds – later saw a 20-yard shot hit the bar, denying him a masterpiece and a first goal of the season.
He was the subject of transfer interest from a bevvy of Championship clubs in January, as revealed by Football Insider, though his game time has since skyrocketed.
Whelan demanded the level of performance from the Welsh international that he saw on Saturday or it could be curtains for his Elland Road career.
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“I think we’ve all been waiting for that kind of performance from Tyler,” he told Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs.
“That’s the frustration from and me and from the fans because we know he’s got the ability, we know he’s got the talent but very rarely have we seen that consistently for a 90-minute period.
“The game against Chelsea highlighted where he needs to set his standards now. He needs to carry this on between now and the end of the season but next season as well if he’s going to stay at Leeds.
“I think that’s been the biggest criticism that I could give him. He just hasn’t shown it enough in a Leeds United shirt.
“To see him involved and play well at the weekend, doing the hard work, he looked fitter, stronger, more confident in his own ability. The shot that Mendy tipped on to the bar proved that.
“If he’s going to keep that shirt he needs to maintain that standard.”
Roberts signed for Leeds from West Brom in January 2018 for £2.5million.
The striker-cum-attacking-midfielder has gone on to play 72 times for the West Yorkshire club, scoring seven goals and assisting nine.