Noel Whelan has slammed the “attitude” of winger Helder Costa and his Leeds United teammates after their 3-0 defeat to Crawley Town on Sunday.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Whites striker and boyhood Elland Road fan claimed the 26-year-old should have been a standout performer at the People’s Pension Stadium.
Instead, Costa and his teammates had little impact on the game with the Portugal international losing possession 15 times against the League Two outfit, according to sofascore.
He was one of five outfield Leeds players that played the full 90 minutes in east Sussex with Marcelo Bielsa using all five substitutes including three at half-time.
Asked by Football Insider for his assessment of Costa’s display, Whelan said: “He doesn’t seem to be showing anything at the minute, does he?
“There was one moment in the first-half where he showed a little bit of skill to get in behind the defence with a nice turn and run. But if that’s all you’re offering against a League Two side in 90 minutes then we have a real problem.
“These players should be absolute standouts against opposition like that and that’s no disrespect to Crawley.
“If they’ve got more heart and desire and want to win second balls more than we do in an FA Cup match then we have a real attitude problem.”
Sunday’s game was the former Wolves man’s first appearance in a white shirt since Leeds’ 4-1 defeat to Crystal Palace on November 7.
He has been limited to just 55 minutes of Premier League action since with summer signing Raphinha starting all of Leeds’ game since the visit to Selhurst Park after replacing Costa at half-time in south London.