Raphinha named in Garth Crooks' BBC Team of the Week after Leeds win v Norwich
Raphinha has been named in Garth Crooks’ BBC Team of the Week after his ‘magic’ performance for Leeds in the win against Norwich.
The Brazilian winger was at his electric best as he hit the woodwork twice and then set up Joe Gelhardt for the winning goal in the 95th minute to help them move away from the relegation zone.
After a period of indifferent form, the 25-year-old was back to his best and Crooks was in awe of his abilities while naming him as part of his best team of the weekend, while questioning Marcelo Bielsa for leaving him out before his sacking.
“What a game this was and it had Elland Road jumping as a consequence,” he said.
“Norwich played their part and on another day might have got a point out of this match. However, it took the magic of Raphinha to inspire not just the team but the crowd.
“The Brazilian hit the woodwork on two occasions and provided the assist for Joe Gelhardt to seal their victory in the 94th minute.
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“To think Marcelo Bielsa left Raphinha out of the game against Manchester United a few weeks ago. It might not have affected the result but you don’t leave players of his quality on the bench when you’re fighting for points to stay in the league.”
The word magic is the perfect word to describe what Raphinha brings to this Leeds United side and explains why Elland Road loves him.
After the January window, where he was linked with Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Liverpool, his performances took a dip and it seemed as though his head may have been turned.
That led to Bielsa dropping him from the team, but he responded to that by scoring as a substitute against Man United and has been lively ever since, but especially under Jesse Marsch.
Now the American coach has got his best player firing again, the team have a far better chance of success in their race for survival with just nine games to go.
It’s not back in their hands yet, but if they can continue to pick up important points then they have every chance of being a Premier League outfit next season, with or without Raphinha.
In other Leeds news, ‘Special’ – Alan Brazil & Ray Parlour blown away by Leeds star after big win v Norwich