Leeds United

Leeds United: Conor McGilligan urges Jesse Marsch to stop changing backline

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Presenter Conor McGilligan has urged Leeds United manager Jesse Marsch to stop changing the club’s defensive backline to allow for some consistency. 

It’s been a bit of an odd season in the Premier League so far for the Whites. As things stand, they have only just crept out of the relegation zone after ending an eight-game winless run.

They did that thanks to a stunning victory against Liverpool at Anfield, while they also comfortably beat Chelsea at home earlier in the campaign. Evidently, there is talent in the squad, but the American has had a tough time getting it out of the Leeds players on a regular basis.

When talking on the One Leeds Fan Channel, McGilligan claimed that if Marsch can trust the same back four and goalkeeper on a regular basis instead of mixing it up so much, he could see the team improve.

He said: “I think it’s so important for a back four to be consistent – a back four and a goalkeeper; a back five. A back five has got to be so consistent because breeding confidence in each person in that back five is absolutely massive.

“And I think just keeping that… we did that at the start of the season, for the first four games, it was the same back four all the time, and then it started to change a little bit.”

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In that win against Liverpool, Marsch opted to play Illan Meslier, Rasmus Kristensen, Liam Cooper, Robin Koch and Pascal Struijk. Seeing as that was the defence that managed to help the team claim all three points, it’s easy to see why the American may trust them against Bournemouth this weekend at Elland Road.

However, alternative defenders such as Diego Llorente, Luke Ayling and Cody Drameh could come into the team, while injured senior players Junior Firpo and Stuart Dallas will also be options later on in the campaign.

Clearly, Marsch has a big call to make. At the very least, he has always opted to play with a back four instead of trying any other formations, so it’s likely to be a matter of personnel as opposed to any major tactical switches.

It’s hard not to look at the club’s shaky form and feel as though consistency will be key. If Marsch can play the same defence against the Cherries and pick up another good result, his men could start to build some real confidence as a unit before we break for the World Cup – which could be key to avoiding relegation in the second half of the season.

Should Jesse Marsch keep his starting team the same?





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