He's back to his best - The stats back up Redfearn's claim regarding Leeds defender Sam Byram

Don Revie Statue

The difference in Leeds defender Sam Byram's play under Neil Redfearn in comparison to his previous bosses is clear to see.

Leeds United head coach Neil Redfearn hailed the performance of the returning Sam Byram against Charlton, with the full-back's attacking talent on full display.

Byram, 21, has been in and out of the side this season, either through injury or non-selection, but appeared to struggle in terms of adjusting to the defensive mindset of his previous manager.

Darko Milanic's style meant that many of Leeds' players struggled, with the right-back's tendency to go forward curbed.

After the 2-2 draw with the Addicks, newly appointed permanent head coach Neil Redfearn told BBC West Yorkshire: "I thought he was different class Sam Byram, he looked much more like himself."

Byram made 16 passes in the final third, the second highest he has made this season. The highest, also came under the management of Neil Redfearn. 

  MatchSuccessful Final Third PassesManager
Sam Byram Leeds vs Brighton 17 Redfearn
Sam Byram Leeds vs Charlton 16 Redfearn
Sam Byram Brentford vs Leeds 10 Milanic
Sam Byram Watford vs Leeds 10 Hockaday
Sam Byram Leeds vs Sheff Wed 9 Redfearn
Sam Byram Leeds vs Middlesbrough 8 Hockaday
Sam Byram Millwall vs Leeds 5 Hockaday
Sam Byram Norwich vs Leeds 4 Milanic
Sam Byram Leeds vs Reading 3 Milanic

The table above illustrates the difference in Byram's play under the three managers he has had picking him this season, with the game against Reading, one in which he made a staggeringly low, only three final third passes.

Byram was clearly curbing his natural instincts under Darko Milanic, whether out of his own caution at trying to adjust to the Slovenian's defensive tactics, or under specific instruction.

Redfearn knows him best due to their time in the under-21s, and Byram, it seems, feels comfortable enought to go and play attacking football.

Leeds were a referee's decision away from beating Charlton, but it looks like Byram's performance, like fellow academy graduate Alex Mowatt, is a real reason to be positive.

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