Three changes Neil Redfearn should make for Leeds United

Neil Redfearn

The season is winding down for Leeds and head coach Redfearn has an opportunity to learn from the last seven games, so here are some changes he could make.

Despite Leeds' fine 2015 form in the Sky Bet Championship, there are areas of the team where the club need to strengthen in the summer. Furthermore, there are a batch of youngsters champing at the bit for a first team opportunity, and the more Redfearn talks about the players, the more he needs to back that up by selecting them.

In the seven games remaining, here are the changes I feel Redfearn needs to make the get the most out of a presentable opportunity of competitive games in which Leeds can afford to experiment.   

1. Can Mirco Antenucci play as the lone front man?

The 4-2-3-1 formation requires a willing worker to play the selfless role up front. While Steve Morison has done that admirably, he has failed to score and doesn't look like doing so. Billy Sharp has scored a couple of decisive goals which have promoted him to a starting spot, be he is not suited to the lone front man role and has struggled to have an impact in recent games. Italian Antenucci has recaptured his early-season form with two goals off the bench in the last two games and has shown the right attitude that merits a starting role. Leeds will be looking for a 20-goal striker in the summer, but can the 30-year-old Antenucci provide an option in that position? He has the work-rate, strength and ability to play across the front line and in wide areas, furthermore he provides an effective goal threat. Redfearn has to try him.

2. Try Lewis Walters in a left midfield attacking role.

The three attacking midfielders have all been effective for Leeds, but where they sometimes lack potency is in wide areas, particularly in the absence of Sam Byram, which has been the case in some recent games through injury. While Charlie Taylor has performed admirably in an attacking position in the last three or four games, many fans agree his long term position is at left back, and he perhaps doesn't carry the attacking threat that Byram poses on the opposite flank. Lewis Walters has fought back from a bad injury in pre-season and merits a first team opportunity, and while he is primarily a striker, he has pace and an ability to run with the ball that could be an asset to Leeds in wide areas.

3. Experiment with the right back slot

Since Byram's promotion up the pitch to right midfield, Leeds have utilised centre half Scott Wootton at right back. While Wootton has grown into the role and been solid in recent weeks, it is not his favoured position and the ex-Manchester United defender does not have a natural attacking game. Swiss defender Gaetano Berardi stepped into the left back berth away at Wigan recently and has proved his versatility in solving a problem in that position. However, Berardi's early-season performances in his more natural right back slot were unconvincing. Berardi deserves another go at right back if Charlie Taylor is to be seen as the club's long term left back. An alternative is youngster Lewie Coyle who has been talked up after recent Development Squad performances and is one of the roster of Under-21 players that Redfearn appears willing to try out.

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