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Leeds: Phil Hay ‘baffled’ by Junior Firpo’s shortcomings

Leeds: Phil Hay ‘baffled’ by Junior Firpo’s shortcomings -Leeds United News

Journalist Phil Hay admits he is ‘baffled’ by Leeds United defender Junior Firpo’s shortcomings as a footballer during what has been a forgettable spell at Elland Road.

The Lowdown: Firpo struggling at Leeds

The Whites signed the Spaniard from Barcelona in the summer of 2021, which at the time felt like an exciting piece of business, considering the La Liga giants’ stature.

The left-back has failed to impress in his time at Leeds so far, though, making just 29 appearances, failing to score and only registering two assists.

For a defender who had been renowned for his attacking qualities during his time with Real Betis in the past, that is a hugely disappointing return.

The Latest: Hay left ‘baffled’

Writing in a matchday Q&A for The Athletic prior to Sunday’s Leeds’ 3-2 defeat at home to Fulham in the Premier League, Hay didn’t hold back when discussing Firpo.

Replying to a supporter who was strongly critical of the 26-year-old, the journalist said:

“We spoke about it at length on the podcast. I’m kind of baffled by him. Technically and tactically he consistently looks a long way short.”

The Verdict: Not good enough

Sadly, this just feels like a signing that Leeds got badly wrong, with Firpo managing very few strong performances since making the move from Barca. Indeed, he ranks a lowly 16th among the squad according to WhoScored performance metrics.

He looks susceptible defensively and doesn’t do nearly enough going forward, as his aforementioned statistics highlight, and he also hasn’t been without injury problems.

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The fact that Jesse Marsch seems more willing to play Pascal Struijk in an auxiliary left-back role when both are fit – something with which Hay agrees – is damning on Firpo’s part, and it could be that a summer exit next year makes sense for all parties.


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