Pablo Hernandez was not involved in the matchday squad as Leeds were beaten by Crystal Palace on Saturday, and Noel Whelan has worries that his future could become a “Pontus Jansson situation”.
The Spaniard raised a few eyebrows when he started last Monday against Leicester and was visibly frustrated when he was subbed off. Whelan has given his thoughts on the display of defiance.
What Whelan had to say about Hernandez
Speaking to Football Insider, Whelan said: “He is a great player and I love him to bits, I really do, but petulance and immaturity like that, when he is a role model to the young lads and fans, is unacceptable.”
“Marcelo Bielsa will not stand for it. We know that from the Pontus Jansson situation. There is definitely something there which needs to be sorted out between manager and player because we could have done with him on Saturday.
“You cannot do that. You just can’t. It is so petulant on his behalf and as an experienced pro, he should know better. Something is definitely not right. There is a rift at the moment.
“You’d hope it will get sorted out but you would also like to think that it would have been sorted before Saturday. They have had long enough to sort that problem out.”
The rift needs to be sorted sooner rather than later for Leeds
Hernandez has had a great spell at Leeds. The Spaniard has 36 goals and 39 assists for the club, but he is now 35, so he’s closer to the end of his career than to the start of it.
No matter his age, he seems to be maturing like a fine wine and he still gives Leeds a great creative threat. Phil Hay raved over the midfielder last season, as he said: ‘The guy is just unreal. Played like a demon since the restart.’
It is understandable why Hay sees him as a key threat as he shone in Leeds’ promotion season last campaign. Hernandez scored nine goals and picked up nine assists (WhoScored). He also managed on average 2.1 shots, 2.3 key passes and 1.1 successful dribbles.
For the 35-year-old to act in such a manner was surprising, however, the issue will hopefully be sorted now that he has missed a game for the club. Bielsa needs the player as he definitely provides a great creative threat, so it will be best for all parties if the issue is resolved.
Jansson was shipped out of Leeds following his falling out with Bielsa, so Whelan was right to highlight this issue and to urge the club to get the matter resolved as soon as possible as there is a track record of the manager moving on from players who have upset him whilst at Elland Road.
In other Leeds-related news, Simon Jordan has launched a tirade at Bielsa. Have a read of it here!
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience