15 clearances, 4 interceptions: Leeds United defender still fails the 'eye test'

Elland Road

Giuseppe Bellusci shone as Leeds United drew at Birmingham City - from a statistical angle at least; simply watching the game he was unimpressive.

In a world of statistics, quite often you can watch a football match, form an opinion and yet have 'facts' tell yu the complete opposite.

One such case was illustrated at the weekend when Leeds United clinched an impressive draw at St Andrews in the Championship's early kick off, with Giuseppe Bellusci the man concerned.

Statistically - he put in a dominant performance, as the following illustrates...

  • Bellusci made an impressive 15 effective clearances - by contrast the Birmingham back four made 17.
  • The Italian defender was responsible for blocking three shots.
  • He won four aerial duels, with the rest of the Leeds back four winning three combined.
  • Bellusci's two tackles won, also doubled Pearce, Warnock and Berardi's contributions, winning just one between them.
  • His four interceptions made was a figure matched only by impressive teenager Lewis Cook in midfield.
  • Opta powered website whoscored.com listed Bellusci as Leeds' top performing player.

Yet when watching the game played by the summer signing from Catania, he was still unimpressive.

The centre-back was largely at fault for the goal scored by Wes Thomas, and lacked composure on the ball. If being judged on the 'eye test' of a watching observer, he would likely have failed whichever the criteria, he simply did not look good.

With another summer signing, young Liam Cooper, on the bench waiting for another chance, Bellusci did not knock it out of the park as the figures seemed to suggest, and the match is likely to be one which causes him to divide opinion among even his own fans.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch