NBC pundit jumps to defence on Leeds United ace Tyler Adams amid Saturday criticism
Robbie Mustoe came to the defence of Leeds United midfielder Tyler Adams after he was blamed for not tracking Memphis Depay in Qatar.
The former Premier League midfielder, and now long-time pundit on NBC in America, stuck up for the USA captain after the Netherlands worked an excellent opening goal in their 3-1 win in the last-16 of the World Cup on Saturday (3 December).
Adams was seen as responsible by some, including Micah Richards on the BBC, for getting beaten as he pressed in midfield and then for being out of position as Depay finished the 21-pass move from just inside the area, with the Whites man a few steps behind, but Mustoe disagreed.
Writing on his personal Twitter account ahead of the second half he said: “Bit harsh on Tyler Adams…. He’s trying to pickup/close down the Dutch MF.
“Memphis is playing as a striker, Adams is assuming a spare CB will take him as he moves towards goal. He can’t track/mark everyone!!”
Six of one
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Adams played a role in his side going behind but it would indeed be harsh to park all the fault at his door, as his whole side was passed around by the Dutch’s best move of the tournament.
In the latter stages of the World Cup even the slightest error can be punished, and that is what happened in this game.
The Elland Road man will likely be disappointed that he didn’t stick with Depay, and there are some similarities with goals conceded by Leeds United in recent weeks.
Adam’s and his teammates were ultimately beaten by the better side on the day, but the experience that they have gained in Qatar should make them a dangerous side in the next World Cup, and the 23-year-old a better player back in the Premier League.
Jesse Marsch will have been delighted by what he saw from his midfielder for the most part, even if he may want to work on tracking runners into the box.
He will primarily have to hope that no super-rich sides have liked Adams too much in this tournament to the point where they might try to turn his head with a big bid in January.
In other Leeds United news, Victor Orta has jumped back into a transfer chase that looked dead and buried.