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Leeds: Liam Cooper has been an unsung hero this season

Leeds United have endured a difficult start to the Premier League season and are currently 15th in the table after 11 games.

Recent wins against Watford and Norwich are their only two victories in the top-flight this term as they sit on 11 points, with two wins, five draws and four defeats.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side have hit a small patch of form of late, with one defeat in their last five Premier League games – including two wins and two draws in that time.

Unsung hero

One player who has potentially gone under the radar with his performances due to the nature of the results this season is centre-back Liam Cooper.

Is Cooper underrated?

Yes

Yes

No

No

The Lillywhites skipper has put in some excellent display at the back, despite Leeds only winning two matches, and deserves credit for his form this term.

Raphinha is the only Leeds outfield player with a higher SofaScore rating (7.26) than Cooper (6.98) this season, highlighting the overall standard of his performances on the pitch for Bielsa at the back.

Presenter Jack Collins compared his importance to Leeds on a spiritual basis to that of Sergio Ramos’ for his respective sides. He told the Rank FC Podcast:

“I think Liam Cooper is a very, very good footballer and I think the fact that Leeds have struggled when he’s not been in the side is testament to the fact that he is actually crucial – not only on a spiritual level, in that [Sergio] Ramos-esque kind of thing – but actually, technically, bringing the ball out, playing this Bielsa system, he’s a very, very good footballer.”

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Cooper has started all 11 of Leeds’ Premier League games and put up some eye-catching defensive numbers. Per SofaScore, he has won an outstanding 76 duels in those 11 games, whilst also making 25 tackles and 21 interceptions from centre-back.

He has not been without his faults, with a penalty conceded against Everton earlier in the campaign. However, the standard of his displays overall show that he has more than made up for that error, with his ability to win the ball back for his team on a regular basis.

The Scot has won 62% of his duels this season and completed 86% of his attempted passes, which shows that he is effective in both his defending and his build-up play. This is why he has been an unsung hero for Leeds in the top-flight, as he is piecing together cohesive showings and proving himself to be a reliable option at this level.

AND in other news, Imagine him and Joffy: LUFC may save millions in 19y/o who can “become a household name”…

Article title: Leeds: Liam Cooper has been an unsung hero this season

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