Former Aston Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor has kept up his tirade against Leeds United by suggesting their reckless tactics mean they are in danger of relegation.
The Whites made a solid return to the Premier League after 16 years last term. Marcelo Bielsa guided them to a ninth-place finish, with the team playing an entertaining brand of football. But things have not gone so well in the early part of 2021-2022.
The Elland Road outfit have yet to win a top-flight game and sit 18th in the table. They have picked up just three points curtesy of draws against Everton, Burnley and Newcastle United.
The West Yorkshire outfit seemed on course to break their duck on Saturday after Raphinha’s 19th-minute goal. However, Junior Firpo’s own goal and a 90th-minute strike from Michail Antonio saw them crash 2-1 to West Ham United.
Agbonlahor has been a fierce critic of both Leeds and Bielsa since they gained promotion to the top flight. He labelled the club a ‘myth’ last October before doubling down on the perceived overreaction to Bielsa’s skills the following month.
And, after the Hammers reverse, the 34-year-old got stuck in once again.
“Going forward they were incredible. Raphinha was outstanding,” he told talkSPORT. “But you need to be able to defend to get results in the Premier League. It’s not all about running forward and leaving two for two like they did with Michail Antonio.
“It’s kamikaze defending week in, week out. West Ham had 20 shots.”
Agbonlahor expects tough times for Leeds
Leeds scored 62 Premier League goals and conceded 54 last season to finish in the top half of the table. They were easy on the eye and refused to take a backward step.
But it appears as though ‘second-season syndrome’ may now be afflicting the club. Agbonlahor does not buy into the fact they play exciting football.
And the man capped three times by England is adamant they face a fight to stay in England’s top division.
“It’s boring when I hear people say it’s entertaining. If I’m a Leeds fan I want to be entertained but I also want to stay in the league,” he added. “Leeds are in a relegation battle now. The way they’re playing, the way they concede goals.
“When you’re 1-0 up, find a way to win the game. When it’s 1-1, find a way to get a point out of the game. They’ve got the second worst goal difference, they’re in a relegation battle whether they like it or not.”