By Dave Woods

17th Jul, 2019 | 2:51pm

Talking points: Leeds hammered 4-0 by Man United down under

Leeds fans were hoping to get one over on their rivals Man United on Wednesday but things didn’t go to plan in Perth. 

An under-strength Leeds side were hammered 4-0 by a rampant United side and, if we’re being honest, the scoreline was slightly flattering for Marcelo Bielsa’s men.

Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford scored in the first half, with the latter hitting the post very early on, before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made 11 changes at half-time.

Phil Jones and Anthony Martial rounded off the rout in the second-half, leaving Leeds very much on the ropes.

These are the talking points.

1. It’s only a friendly

This is true. Except it was Man United and there aren’t any friendlies between these two sides – a few tackles proved this point. Still, it’s hardly a surprise that an under-strength team from the Championship were beaten comfortably by a Premier League side with a billion-pound squad. The real question is, what purpose did it serve? What benefits do Leeds get from travelling halfway round the globe to suffer such a heavy defeat a couple of weeks before the season starts? We know the answer is commercial but this won’t have done our pre-season preparations any favours.

2. Defence is light

Ben White didn’t fly out to Australia and he may well have a big part to play at the back next season, but Leeds went into last season’s Championship light at the back and they’re about to do the same thing again. Today’s defeat wasn’t just about the defence – Leeds looked wide open all over – but we think they’re at least one centre-back short after Pontus Jansson left. Unfortunately, we don’t think that Bielsa feels the same way. Prediction: it’s a problem that’s going to rear its head before the January window opens.

3. This wasn’t the true Leeds

Leeds fans can take heart from the fact that this was a team that was a few sandwiches short of a full picnic. As well as White, Helder Costa, Mateusz Klich and Luke Ayling were all missing. There’s no doubt we’ll be better with those players back. We know why Bielsa left these players behind at Thorp Arch but we’re even more sure than before that splitting a team a few weeks before the Championship starts is a bad idea.

4. Wow, James is fast

Daniel James can shift. We knew that anyway but watching him play for Man United today was frightening at times and the fact that he should be a Leeds player is heart-breaking. He was really unlucky not to score when he burst through on goal and smacked his shot against the post, and we (reluctantly) think he’s going to be a star for Man United next season.

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