Pearce is seemingly wary of the younger players Neil Redfearn could introduce into the first team at Elland Road and says the competition is positive, implying it will keep him on his toes.
“We’ve got young Coops who we’ve brought in who’s a very good player as well and is pushing me,” he told the Leeds website.
“It keeps me on my toes and I’ll just have to try and keep playing well.”
One of the first jobs Redfearn has to achieve is making sure that his Leeds team has a strong core and a solid spine which comes from having a settled defence, midfield and attack.
Pearce is the team’s natural leader so he’ll start in Redfearn’s initial team but it’s encouraging that a player who is relatively safe in terms of his role is still looking over his shoulder.
Redfearn is a risk taker, which is different to what we saw under Darko Milanic and if he feels that players aren’t working out, he won’t hesitate to use the younger players at his disposal to make team changes.
Not only can Cooper keep Pearce on his toes, he can also bring out other qualities from the Leeds skipper as he may see the Scot as a player he can effectively take under his wing and nurture.
Pearce is three years Cooper’s senior and a role model for the former Scottish youth international as he looks to become the next in a long line of younger players getting a crack in the Whites senior side.