Leeds v Everton

We’re off and running! And how good was it to be back?

I said after the opening day hiding in Stretford, it was important we got something out of the Everton game, and we have to be more than happy with the point.

To come from behind twice not only shows the character we have, but will also be great for confidence and belief especially when it looked like we were wobbling again briefly at 2-1 down.

I thought Marcelo got his team selection spot on for this one. We missed Kalvin badly against Man U last weekend and his presence offers the back-four the protection they were missing. We’ve seen Koch, Klich, and Struijk all fill in there over the past year or so, but Kalvin is a specialist in what he does, and he does it well.

As a crowd we got our first teal taste of VAR and being a defender, I can sympathise with Liam Cooper. Dominic Calvert-Lewin was clever in what he did and as a result he got the penalty. Of course, he was pulling Coops’ shirt, but the TV pictures weren’t conclusive on that front and just showed Liam grabbing his. Quality players have a craft like that and are streetwise in what they do.

There’s not a lot you can say about Everton’s second goal. Stuart Dallas had got Demerai Gray going away from goal and he wasn’t going to get a cross in, and in the end it was a bit unfortunate for Leeds to concede in that manner. But it probably summed up Gray’s performance because he was head and shoulders the best man on the pitch by a mile.

If Gray was outstanding then the main man for Leeds was Raphinha. His equalising goal was absolutely class, but he was our biggest threat throughout. He’s carried on from where he left off last season and he’s been a fantastic signing. He will earn us a lot of points this season through his sheer class and his consistency will play a huge part in deciding how things pan out for us.

I do think we’re missing Diego Llorente because he gives us more at the back. He was unfortunate with injuries, but he’s a real quality defender and his presence will be a big boost.

All in all it was a good point and it was even better to back, but I’ll come to the later in the week…

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