Okay, the alarm bells are starting to ring.
I’ve long been of the opinion that Leeds would head towards the end of the season in a position of safety but barring a miracle that’s clearly not going to be the case now and we’re going to be scrapping for our survival until the end.
I’ve always believed there are four worse teams than Leeds in the Premier League this season – Newcastle, Norwich, Burnley, and Watford – but after the events of the past week, I’m seriously beginning to question my judgement.
Our problem is simple. We give goals away like confetti and you cannot keep doing it. I speak from experience because I played in a Leeds side which got turned over 4-0 at Leicester and Everton, and then conceded six at Portsmouth a few weeks later. At the end of the season we paid the price for it.
Against Manchester United last Sunday, they could have been out of sight before our second half comeback. For a moment, it looked like we would be all right and had snatched a draw from the jaws of defeat. Then we gave away two more sloppy goals and that was that.
At Liverpool in midweek, we were the architects of our downfall once again. We gave away some bad goals again, and you couldn’t argue with the final score.
Marcelo has had some hammer from certain quarters because of the way we are setting up in games, but for anyone to suggest he should be sacked is nonsense. Yes, he is responsible for the tactics and the way we play leaves us very, very open to conceding goals, but he achieved what so many failed at in getting us back to the Premier League, and I’m not sure how a change of manager at such a crucial time would help at all.
It was evident last summer we needed to strengthen and increase the size of the squad, but that didn’t happen. Marcelo has always said he prefers operating with a small squad, but at times it’s bordered on the ridiculous this season because of the injuries we’ve had.
The absences of Kalvin Phillips and Patrick Bamford have had a huge impact on the direction the season has gone in, but it’s the lack of any real replacement for either that is baffling, and that could seriously cost us.
It’s Tottenham at Elland Road on Saturday, and you don’t know what you’re going to get from them. They go to Man City and win, and then a few days later Antonio Conte is practically suggesting his time is already up at the club.
We’ve got to be solid. We cannot afford to be open again. And, yes, that means reining in the way we play and maybe going back to basics. We conceded 10 in a week and 16 in the last four. If ever there was a time for Marcelo to adopt a Plan B, it’s now. Before it’s too late.