Leeds United defender Jason Pearce does not seem to be guaranteed a place in the team anymore.
Jason Pearce may be the Leeds United captain, but he is not guaranteed a place in the starting line-up.
In fact, the 27-year-old defender is not even guaranteed the captain’s armband when he does take to the pitch.
Pearce was dropped from the team for last weekend’s clash against league leaders Derby County at Elland Road in the Championship, and Leeds won 2-0.
The former Portsmouth star replaced the injured Giuseppe Bellusci against Ipswich Town at Portman Road on Saturday, and Leeds lost 4-1 - that’s after taking the lead in the early minutes of the encounter.
With Bellusci set to recover from his hamstring strain against Fulham this Saturday, Pearce could be consigned to be the substitutes’ bench.
“He’s got a bit of a hamstring strain but we don’t think it’s a bad one,” The Yorkshire Evening Post quotes manager Neil Redfearn as saying. “It was always going to be a couple of weeks or so but hopefully he’ll be available for the Fulham game.
“We’ll have to see how he’s doing this week. It’ll be touch and go. After the performance and the result we had against Derby, the last thing I wanted to do was change the side but it was enforced.
“In an ideal scenario I’d have kept the same team but you have to accept these things. Jason came in and played his part.”
What is clear from Redfearn’s comments is that he would not have started Pearce if he had not been forced to. It is also evident that should Bellusci recover as expected, he will replace the Englishman in the team.
Pearce remains the Leeds captain, but against Ipswich he did not wear the armband, with Redfearn explaining: “Steve (Stephen Warnock) skippered a side who played really well last weekend and I didn’t want to make changes if I didn’t have to.
“Jason had been out of the side and he came back in but Steve kept the armband. That was the long and short of it.”
The onus is now on Pearce to recover his old form and regain his place in the team. As things stand, both his spot and his captaincy at Leeds is under threat.