Tyler Adams has told BBC Radio Leeds that new Leeds United manager Javi Gracia has instructed his Leeds United side to keep the ball and be more methodical when breaking teams down – rather than Jesse Marsch’s gung-ho approach.
Gracia, 52, has watched his side secure a crucial three points against Southampton in his first match. Then, on Tuesday, suffer a 2-0 loss to Fulham in the FA Cup. That is despite matching Fulham for the entire match, at Craven Cottage.
Of course, going far in the FA Cup would have been nice for us Leeds fans. But it is not a priority. That priority returns on Saturday afternoon – again in West London – when Leeds travel south to take on Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Speaking ahead of the game on Wednesday, USA skipper Adams commented on Gracia. He shared the main change Gracia has instilled at Leeds having only worked under Jesse Marsch previously during his time since joining Leeds.
“He’s impressed me a lot. He focused on key bullet points or details where we need to improve – one of those was with the ball. Not just going to goal straight away. Leeds are notorious for winning the ball back quickly,” Adams said.
“Going straight to the goal. Now, not every time we win the ball back do we have to go forward. We can keep the ball for two or three passes. Tire the opponent. More of a balanced approach, not all-out pressing, or all-out possession.”
Adams: Gracia instructing Leeds to be more methodical than Marsch
It is what Leeds needed. Against Southampton, it was clear. There was more control to the way Leeds played, a bit more understanding about what was needed to do to keep the game the way Leeds wanted it to go. Clean sheet.
Exactly what Leeds needed to beat a Southampton side that had their tails up after a 1-0 win over Chelsea. Leeds will not be able to instill that control against a side like Chelsea, but you would expect us to be more defensively secure.