Noel Whelan delivers instant verdict on Leeds display against QPR
By Harry Sykes
Noel Whelan admitted he was concerned by Leeds’ attacking play following their goalless Championship draw against QPR on Saturday.
The Yorkshire giants did not have a single shot on target in a drab encounter at Elland Road that highlighted their lack of goal threat.
Leeds were completely outplayed by Fulham in their midweek 1-1 draw and once again they struggled to create chances in their second league game of the week.
Nevertheless, Garry Monk’s side consolidated their place in the play-off positions as they stretched their unbeaten league sequence to six matches and maintained their place at fourth in the Championship table.
Ex-Leeds striker Whelan explained why the team’s failure to get the best out of striker Chris Wood, the 22-goal top scorer in the division, and playmaker Pablo Hernandez was a worry.
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“It wasn’t a great spectacle, by any stretch of the imagination. No shots on target says it all. QPR squeezed any kind of space for the ball to be played to Hernandez and it all became very dull,” said Whelan to BBC Radio Leeds in the immediate aftermath of the match, as quoted by the BBC Leeds live match blog (Saturday, 4.54pm).
“I’m more concerned that Leeds can’t create anything against three centre halves. It’s hard enough for Wood against two – and he had three big, strong centre halves battling for every ball today. ”
Leeds remain well placed to secure the top-six finish that would guarantee them a place in the play-offs despite the shock Fulham triumph at Newcastle on Saturday.
Defeats for fifth-placed Reading and sixth-placed Sheffield Wednesday enabled Monk’s side to remain behind only three teams in the table.
But they remain a distant 11 points drift of both leaders Newcastle, despite their 3-1 home defeat to Fulham on Saturday, and Brighton in second.
In-form Fulham are the best placed to challenge the top six, and have climbed to win six points of Leeds with a game in hand.
In other Leeds team news, the club are to pounce and re-sign a 23-year-old after a £10million transfer is all but sealed.