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What is wrong with the Leeds United captaincy?

Leeds United captain Liam Cooper finds himself struggling to make the team.

The captain's armband at Leeds United cannot seem to find a permanent home. Over the past 12 months a variety of players have been unable to hold onto it on a consistent basis.

Here is a look at the recent travails of those who have been fortunate enough to be captain of the club.

Ross McCormack: Sold

Top scorer last season, McCormack was sold for a huge fee to Fulham, a move which is turning out to be disastrous. The striker has not even scored half the amount he did for Leeds in 2013/14, and is now battling to keep Fulham away from relegation to League One. His humiliation was complete when he was jeered off by Leeds fans as he was substituted during a 3-0 win for the Yorkshire side at Craven Cottage this week.

Jason Pearce: Dropped, Sold

Jason Pearce began the season as the main man in defence, but by late January he had slipped down to fourth choice. It was little surprise he was sold to Wigan Athletic, and he too is in a real battle to avoid relegation from the Championship.

Stephen Warnock: Sold

There was real outcry when Stephen Warnock was sold, having stepped into captain the club with Pearce dropped. The left-back was a consistent performer, but has not had a great start at Derby. He has not held down a first team spot, and managed to get sent off on a rare start. Leeds have had no trouble replacing him with Charlie Taylor and Gaetano Berardi.

Liam Cooper: Dropped

Liam Cooper has had his moments since being handed the captaincy, and is highly rated by Neil Redfearn. The club's defence however looks better without him at present, with Sol Bamba and Giuseppe Bellusci forging a terrific partnership. Cooper has been deployed at left-back, but both Taylor and Berardi look more comfortable in the position.

Sol Bamba...?

Loanee Sol Bamba has been a fantastic signing since arriving, and even netted his first goal for the club this week against Fulham. If giving him the captaincy full-time is what it takes to sign him permanently, Leeds should ensure he gets it, for it would be a real mistake to allow him to slip away.

Why has there been so much chopping and changing?

The changes in captaincy are a direct reaction to a tumultuous year off the pitch. Neil Redfearn, in his first season as boss, has had to experiment with his team selection and deal with transfers. The decision to sell Stephen Warnock was not his, instead owner Massimo Cellino's.

The solution would be to sign Bamba on a permanent deal and hand him the armband and give Cooper a chance to grow into the side, and re-take the captaincy later in his career.

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