MOT View: Worrying stat highlights Leeds problem Bielsa must fix fast
Leeds have a big problem that they simply have to crack if they want to get promoted this season.
All the talk since the Millwall game has been the injustice of the penalty and the red card awarded to Gaetano Berardi, and there’s no doubt Marcelo Bielsa’s side were hard done to.
However, that’s in danger of distracting away from a problem that plagued the club last season and hasn’t gone away this season. Goals.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side play brilliant attacking football and they create a lot of chances. Not enough of them are getting converted.
According to stats site WyScout, Leeds should have scored over 23 goals this season. That’s their total xG – the goals they would have been expected to score given the chances they’ve had.
Leeds have actually scored 15 – an incredible eight under expectation. If that doesn’t improve, it’s going to end up costing Leeds promotion. If they carry on like this they’ll score 63 goals over the season – and that is very unlikely to be enough for a top-two spot.
West Brom are top of the table and they’ve got a total xG of 16.27. They’ve scored 21 goals. They’re running way above expectation and that won’t last but it shows the difference between the two sides at the moment.
The good news for Leeds is that every single team above them are over-performing at the moment – Preston by a massive seven goals.
However, this is a real issue. While things are going well for teams, confidence will be high. By contrast, everyone at Leeds will be aware of this stat and it’s likely to feed into fears and create nerves in front of goal.
Patrick Bamford is the main offender. He’s scored four goals – he should have 6.5. Over a season that’s a difference of around 16 to 26 goals.
Marcelo Bielsa holds Bamford in high regard and said his efficiency will improve sooner or later. If it happens later for Leeds they could have a real struggle on their hands.
Eddie Nketiah on his own might not be the answer but Bielsa needs to fix this problem and fast.
In other Leeds news, ‘What a player’ – These Leeds fans hail ‘class’ player despite 2-1 defeat v Millwall