By Mark Smith

11th Dec, 2019 | 9:25am

MOT View: Berardi shines while 29y/o gets a 5 – Leeds player ratings v Hull

It was a tough watch last night – I know, I was at Elland Road. 

As the game continued, the feeling was that Leeds United may never score. Hull City came to frustrate the Whites and it worked for large periods.

Marcelo Bielsa’s men found a way through, in the end, to make it seven wins in a row – that is the difference this season.

The opener came in lucky circumstances with Jordy De Wijs turning into his own net, as Ezgjan Alioski sealed the three points minutes later.

It was fully deserved though, as Leeds had much-longer spells of dominance – proved by the attacking momentum graph from SofaScore.

Here are our MOT player ratings from Tuesday’s 2-0 victory…

1. Kiko Casilla – 8

Once again the Spaniard came to the rescue after not having much to do all game. Just before the second goal, Tom Eaves looked certain to score until he somehow kept the ball off the line. His form has been vital to this seven-game winning streak.

2. Luke Ayling – 6

Ayling has been much better in other games. He struggled to have the same influence going forward as he has had against the likes of Huddersfield.

3. Stuart Dallas – 7

Although he didn’t appear all over the pitch, as usual, he had a much more disciplined performance against Hull. Dallas was given the task of keeping Jarrod Bowen quiet, and he did that superbly.

4. Ben White – 7 

Was given one of his sternest tests yet against Eaves, as he proved he can cope with the physical demand of the Championship alongside his clear skill on the ball for Leeds United.

5. Gaetano Berardi – 9

Superb from Berardi on Tuesday. There have been question marks regarding his ability to come in and replace the likes of Liam Cooper, but they could have been blown out of the window. The Swiss enforcer was composed and didn’t shy away from the battle against the menacing Hull attack.

6. Kalvin Phillips – 6

A strange evening for Phillips. Coming back in from suspension, it took him a while to get back into the flow of things. The Yorkshire Pirlo played a number of misplaced passes and didn’t show for the ball as much as usual at Elland Road.

7. Mateusz Klich – 5

The Pole looked tired on Tuesday, as he struggled to do much against the Tigers. The 29-year-old did play an important role in the counter-attack for the second goal but often took too long to trackback – something which is vital against a Hull side who thrive on that.

8. Pablo Hernandez – 7

Even when he isn’t at his best, Hernandez still plays a massive role in the heart of this Leeds side. The Spaniard was sloppy in large parts of the game, but you can’t take him out of this team. The playmaker is capable of the extraordinary, with his little turns and passes making him a vital cog in this promotion push.

9. Patrick Bamford – 7

A player that is starting to really split opinion. It isn’t about just goals now for Bamford, and him realising that has made him a much better player. The penny has dropped for the forward, who is relentless in his physical battles with opposing defences, playing a vital role even if he isn’t finding the back of the net. He tormented De Wijs all evening, and the defender ended up scoring an own goal.

10. Jack Harrison – 6

A quiet evening for Harrison, who often put way too much on his crosses. The 23-year-old struggled to beat Eric Lichaj, but on an evening where a lot of the play was down the opposite side, the winger wasn’t involved as much as he usually is.

11. Helder Costa – 8

Despite looking drained after half an hour, Costa put that behind him and was a real threat once again. It won’t be long until he starts finding the back of the net more consistently, after having one ruled out for a questionable offside decision. The Portuguese star is starting to find his feet, and we believe that could be massive for Leeds in the next few months.

Substitutes

Ezgjan Alioski (For Harrison, 69 minutes) – 7

Unlucky to be dropped after his role in the win at Huddersfield, Alioski didn’t let that get to him. The winger added much-needed urgency to the game, scoring the second and making a number of beautiful passes.

Pascal Struijk (For Costa, 91 minutes) – 6

Great to see yet another academy product making their debut. The defensive colossus made a couple of good interventions and made sure of the clean sheet.

Barry Douglas (For Klich, 96 minutes) – N/A

Another late cameo for Douglas, with the full-time whistle going not long after he stepped on to the field.

In other Leeds United news, ‘He’s been the difference’ – Kevin Davies claims transformed player has put Leeds on brink of PL