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The two problems Pearce's suspension has created for Leeds United

Jason Pearce's suspension has created a double edged problem for Leeds United boss Neil Redfearn.

Leeds United captain Jason Pearce will not feature in the game against Charlton this Tuesday as he’s suspended after his fifth booking of the season in the Championship.

It creates the huge problem for Neil Redfearn of how he’s going to replace Pearce’s main quality; his leadership.

The boss has already confirmed that Liam Cooper will come into the team, the player Pearce himself has cited as the youngster keeping him on his toes at Elland Road, preventing complacency over his position in the team.

However, Pearce is Leeds’ leader and an important player as the side is scratching around for a first win since Neil Redfearn was last in control of the first team.

Redfearn is likely to emphasise the importance for older and more experienced players in the side to step up in Pearce’s absence, to ensure that there are presences in the team in terms of providing that authority.

Pearce is also the best at the club in terms of the number of aerial duels won by Leeds players so far this season.

  PositionTeamAerial Duels WonAppearancesMins Played
Jason Pearce DF Leeds 50 15 1,350
Stephen Warnock DF Leeds 26 12 1,031
Tommaso Bianchi MF Leeds 19 14 1,237
Giuseppe Bellusci DF Leeds 18 12 1,047
Souleymane Doukara FW Leeds 17 11 824

He makes it difficult for sides to try and hurt Leeds in the air and is key in terms of keeping the opposition’s most effective player in the air quiet during big games.

His absence changes the dynamic of the Leeds backline and while there are other players who are effective in terms of aerial challenges, Pearce is way out ahead.

Redfearn may have to try and set his defence up designed to try and get Charlton playing on the deck in front of Leeds defence, where they’ll arguably be easier to contain for a back four without Pearce.

Any side that is forced to play without their captain is going to suffer but it’s important for Leeds to focus, try to keep a clean sheet and try to grab a goal which will put three points on the board and get the team moving in the right direction.

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