Leeds United's starting XI against Sutton shows why they were wrong to sell Alex Mowatt

Leeds' Alex Mowatt celebrates scoring their second goal

Leeds United could have done with the talented midfielder and he has the potential to turn into a star, unlike some of those on show at the weekend.

Many Leeds United fans were left bemused by the club’s decision to part company with Alex Mowatt, and when you consider the performances of some of those left behind in their FA Cup fourth round defeat to Sutton United on Sunday, questions have to be asked.

Some will argue that there was simply not a place for Mowatt in Leeds’ starting XI under Garry Monk, but football is a squad game and the 21-year-old had plenty to offer prior to his switch to Barnsley for what should prove to be a bargain fee.

Leeds' Alex Mowatt celebrates scoring their second goal

Leeds gave Billy Whitehouse a debut against Sutton while loanee Matt Grimes continued to collect critics rather than plaudits with another poor showing, and the simple fact is neither player is better than Mowatt regardless of their slightly different positions.

Mowatt may be best as a number 10 – and it is fair to say that he will never be a winger – but in a central midfield role he can excel and there is no doubt he would have offered more for Leeds on Sunday than those who were deemed – for whatever reason – better options either now or longer term.

Leeds' Alex Mowatt celebrates scoring their second goal

Whitehouse may come good in time (although the jury is out) while Grimes is surely on his way back to Swansea City at the end of the season, but watching Leeds on Sunday proved that selling Mowatt rather than offering him a new deal – whoever’s decision that was – was a foolish one that could come back to haunt the Whites sooner than some first feared.

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