Defensively, Leeds United weren’t at the races against a Wigan side reduced to 10 men and without an away win since August last year.
The way that twice they were able to break out of the Leeds United siege of their goal and tuck away their only two big chances of the game was testament to that.
There was something missing at the back, the usual defensive cohesion crumbling somewhat under what was, in reality, the slightest of pressure from a skirmishing Latic’s side.
Many Leeds United fans are saying that what is missing is simple – Liam Cooper.
Club captain Cooper has been out since tweaking his hamstring in the warm-up to the Sheffield Wednesday game a week ago. Leeds put in a performance that game. Against Wigan it was a performance at the other end of the spectrum that made the Wigan game much less of a Good Friday.
Cooper’s consistency at the back, in the heart of the Leeds United defence has definitely been missed. The Yorkshire Evening Post’s Phil Hay, in this article, underlines the fact that Leeds will have to bounce back from the Wigan disappointment without their captain.
Hay reports that Marcelo Bielsa was asked if Cooper would be ready for Easter Monday’s trip to Brentford, the Argentinian replying “I don’t think so.”
The Whites struggled to match the physicality of Leon Clarke and the jet-heeled pace of Gavin Massey against Wigan. Having a solid defender like Liam Cooper available would have been a bonus against a Brentford side packing the goals of French striker Neal Maupay.
However, it looks as if they will have to rely on Gaetano Berardi once more as they look to bounce back to winning ways at this most vital part of the season.