Leeds Untied defender Gaetano Berardi had arguably his best game of the season as he contributed greatly to his side’s impressive 2-1 victory over Championship rivals Derby County.
The Swiss full-back joined Leeds in the summer of 2014, but it wasn’t until the back-end of last season when he really started to shine, starting in 10 of the club’s final 11 matches.
Capable of playing on either side, he was deployed at right-back for Leeds’ clash with the Rams and tasked with stopping talented forward Johnny Russell from making a big impact.
His first-half performance was impeccable, but what was arguably more impressive was his leadership skills and coolness during a period in the second half when his team really came under the cosh.
|Tackles||Interceptions||Effective Clearances||Def Duels Won||Aerial Winners||Ball Recoveries||Accurate Passes||Mins Played|
As per the table provided by Opta Stats, Berardi performed extremely well in a number of key areas and really had the beating of opponent Russell and Derby’s attacking full-back Craig Forsyth.
The 27-year-old contributed with three tackles, three interceptions, two effective clearances, two aerial winners, three ball recoveries and a hugely impressive seven defensive duel winners.
In possession, he was reliable and posted a credible 25 accurate passes with a 78.1% success rate, a statistic which will please boss Uwe Rosler considering the hosts’ pressure on the ball.
A first-half header from Tom Adeyemi gave the Whites a deserved lead heading into the break, but Chris Martin levelled minutes after the restart and the Rams really upped the tempo, creating more chances.
However, Uwe Rosler’s men defended stoutly and rode out the storm before Chris Wood fired in an unstoppable effort five minutes from time, handing the visitors their first three points of the season.