During the latter stages of the game on Saturday, Monk brought on Charlie Taylor for Pablo Hernandez. If you don’t put any thought into it, it just seems like he’s throwing on a defender in a game that was won to stop Pablo getting injured. However, as soon as Taylor stepped onto the pitch, Leeds switched to a 5-3-2 formation. With Bartley, Jansson as the back three with Berardi and Taylor as the wing-backs. Could this be suggesting a switch in formation, possibly for away games?
Leeds have been poor in away games for a while now and I myself thought it may be time for a switch, possibly putting 3 in midfield. However, it seems Garry has gone a different route and looked at the 5-3-2. It may have only been for 5 minutes at the end of a game we had already won, but it shows they’ve been practicing in training and they wouldn’t do that at this stage of the season for no reason. This is what that team may look like It makes a lot of sense, our current system hasn’t worked away for a while and Pablo has been extremely poor in games away from Elland Road. A switch in formation would also be a shock to Newcastle, giving us a slight edge going into the game.
The semantics are up for debate, Monk may choose to play Doukara up with Wood, or even Antonsson. However, I believe after Roofe’s performance against Preston he is undroppable. You could also throw in Bridcutt as one of the three, but I think with the three I selected, you get the most energy and you’ll need that away from home, especially against Newcastle. It’s worth remembering that Luke Ayling used to play as one of a back three for Bristol City, so he has experience in that area. Charlie Taylor would be extremely well suited to the wing-back role and although Berardi would definitely not be a natural there, I’m pretty sure he’d play in net for us if he had to.
This could all be rubbish of course, but Monk does nothing without reason. He wouldn’t have tried out the back five, even for a second, on Saturday if he didn’t have plans for it. I personally think this would be a good move, as our setup has been getting a bit stale on the road. What do you think, should we play 5-3-2 away from home?