Once a player adrift in the wilderness and seemingly abandoned as a player lucky to even be on the field, Jordan Botaka seems to be having something of a renaissance in Steve Evans’ eyes.
A flash fifteen minute appearance against Wolves where he hit the woodwork with one side-footed shot led to a half against Hull City as Leeds battled back from a 2-1 half-time deficit.
Against Hull City, Botaka’s performance in 45 minutes of football was just what the doctor ordered for a player looking to make a statement and get some game time at the end of what has been a frustrating season for the DR Congo winger.
He certainly caught the eye of Leeds head coach Steve Evans who told the club website: “He’s certainly given himself an opportunity to have a future here. You can never decide after 10-15 minutes and a second half at Hull, but what I do know is that the kid came on against Wolves with a real point to prove – and I felt he made it. That 10-15 minutes against Wolves allowed me to think more positively about putting him in the team at half-time at Hull.
Evans then went on to say that he felt that Botaka’s actual performance has done him no end of good and is just reward for his efforts on the training pitches at Thorp Arch. Evans noted that after the Hull game: “he [Botaka] had a really industrious second half and it was even better when he set up the equalising goal. I’m pleased for Jordan, he’s a lovely kid and he’s a good professional. He hurts when he’s not in the team.”