Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa revealed why he opted against starting Tom Pearce against Nottingham Forest on Saturday, saying that Stuart Dallas had played to well at right-back previously to be left out. Leeds drew 1-1 with Nottingham Forest, leaving them second in the Championship table to leaders Sheffield United.
In the absence of Barry Douglas, Pearce and Dallas have operated at left-back recently. After being an unused substitute in 11 of Leeds’ first 13 league games of the season, Pearce played in United’s last two outings – both as a substitute. Dallas has operated at left-midfield for much of the campaign until Douglas’ injury and now he’s been installed at left-back.
Dallas may be first-choice while Douglas is absent, but Pearce has still been given a good number of minutes from the bench in recent weeks. Nevertheless, Bielsa explained why he’s chosen the former over the latter, citing recent performances as the clincher in his decision.
As per Leeds Live, he said: “In the last game, when Dallas came he had a very good performance, as a right-back. It was hard for me to take the decision not to put (Pearce) in the team. I was positively impressed by Dallas, who, as a left-back, had a regular performance. When he played as a right-back he played very well, he had a very important performance.”
Pearce has made just four appearances in all competitions this season, two in the Championship and two in the EFL Cup. Dallas has made 11 appearances across the board, 10 of which have been in the Championship.
Stats from Transfermarkt.