By Mark Smith

15th Dec, 2019 | 8:30am

Leeds star left 'disappointed' by Bielsa decision in 3-3 draw v Cardiff

With the suggestions that Arsenal could recall Eddie Nketiah from Leeds United in January, it should have come as no surprise to see him replace Patrick Bamford against Cardiff.

Leeds were cruising, so why not take off one of your main players for a rest? It was one of the decisions that ultimately cost the Whites, as they instantly lost all momentum from the front, with Nketiah not capable of putting the same amount of pressure on a defence that Bamford does so well.

The 26-year-old had scored twice to put his side in control, the first a beautifully composed finish after bringing the ball down on the edge of the six-yard box.

Cardiff fought back to make it 3-3 in the end, and it was Nketiah who missed a chance to steal back the three points in injury time at Elland Road.

Bamford admitted that he was feeling tired before being replaced by Nketiah, but that he still wanted to stay on the pitch and go for his first Leeds hattrick.

“To be honest, as I was going off, I was a bit tired and I was a bit disappointed because obviously I wanted to get a hat-trick and stuff, but going off, I thought, the game’s done,” he told BBC West Yorkshire Sport after the draw.

“We have won. We can be happy. I can go and watch the rest of the game.’ Then it turns around”

Bamford can count himself unlucky, and maybe on this evidence, it might be a while before we see him being dragged off in the second half this season.

Bamford is only dribbled past once every two games according to WhoScored – a stat that proves he defends from the front and gives Leeds a great basis to catch opponents at their weakest when losing possession.

It’s easy to say that this decision cost Leeds in hindsight, but Bielsa is a man who certainly learns from his mistakes, with all attention now switching to the game at Fulham on Saturday.

In other Leeds United news, Bielsa blown away by player Victor Orta has set sights on signing for Leeds – report