Noel Whelan worried Leeds winger Gjanni Alioski has gone back to old ways

A general view of Elland Road Stadium prior to the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Brighton & Hove Albion at Elland Road on October 17, 2015 in Leeds, England.

Like many of his Leeds United teammates, Gjanni Alioski endured a difficult time against Birmingham City on Saturday.

Ezgjan Alioski of Leeds United during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Middlesbrough at Elland Road on November 19, 2017 in Leeds, England.

Noel Whelan has told BBC Radio Leeds that Leeds' last two performances have left him worried that Gjanni Alioski has reverted back to his old ways of being too soft to cope with the demands of the Championship.

After a sensational year in Switzerland last term, Alioski was arguably one of the summer signings who arrived with a big reputation, and there were certainly some glimpses of his quality early on. However, the Macedonia international then went through an extremely quiet period before November.

Ezgjan Alioski of Leeds United celebrates after scoring their second goal during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Middlesbrough at Elland Road on November 19, 2017...

From then however, the 25-year-old stepped up significantly, scoring four and providing two assists in the next six games to help inspire Leeds' upturn in form. But he has struggled a little more in the last two games - the 2-1 win over Burton Albion and the 1-0 defeat on Saturday to Birmingham City - and Whelan is fearful about his recent form.

"Alioski has got better, bar the last two games," he told BBC Radio Leeds after the defeat at St Andrew's.

"Burton, I felt that he'd gone back to his old ways again, soft, not holding the ball up, looking for help from the referee, falling down when he should be going into challenges and that just followed on in today's performance as well."

Ezgjan Alioski of Leeds United celebrates after scoring the second goal during Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Leeds United at City Ground on August 26, 2017 in...

In fairness to Alioski, he has been one of the players that Thomas Christiansen has relied heavily on since his arrival at Elland Road, with only Kalvin Phillips and Luke Ayling playing more games in the Championship than the former Lugano man, so he is arguably entitled to go off the boil from time to time, especially as it is his first season in England.

But with Alioski starring when Leeds faced Nottingham Forest at the City Ground back in August, Christiansen will be hoping that Forest's visit on New Year's Day helps bring the best out of the winger once again.

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