Crystal Palace slumped to a disappointing 2-1 defeat to Leeds United at Elland Road in a result which has left Roy Hodgson’s side outside the top half of the Premier League table.
Palace allowed Leeds to take an early lead through Jack Harrison, and struggled to earn a foothold in the game thereafter once Patrick Bamford put the game beyond the Eagles shortly after the break, leaving them level on points with Southampton and two adrift of Arsenal.
Unfortunately it was one of those nights for Luka Milivojevic as slack passing and poor positioning cut a bad night in the office for the club captain.
As per SofaScore ratings, the 29-year-old was graded as the worst player on the pitch with a miserable 6.0 rating – the only starter other than Nathaniel Clyne from either team to receive such a low score.
Milivojevic’s midfield pivot with Jairo Riedewald backfired as both were closed down far too easily in the first half, as evidenced by the fact he lost seven of his nine duels overall (78%).
We can’t quite get our heads around why he stayed on the pitch for as long as he did because the way he was playing wasn’t going to help them salvage a point at the very least. Despite his tall frame, the 6 ft colossus failed to win either of his two duels in the air.
Not only was he lightweight, he was badly caught out with poor passing, particularly in the first 45 minutes, as he could only provide two accurate long balls from four attempts and also lost possession ten times, the same amount as Nathaniel Clyne, which was far below his season’s average of 7.9 per 90.
This is a clear indication of just how much of a passenger Milivojevic was for Palace which could spell trouble for Hodgson given the fact the ever-reliable James McArthur was nowhere to be seen.
Milivojevic also conceded two fouls, which was more than Clyne and the most of any player on the pitch other than Jordan Ayew and Kalvin Phillips, whilst he also committed an error leading to a shot as well to sum up his frustrations on the night.
With Burnley next on the agenda, Hodgson will have to consider his midfield options carefully indeed if he wishes to avoid further embarrassment.
AND in other news, Crystal Palace suffer Wilfried Zaha injury blow before Leeds clash…