Skubala spots damaging issue Leeds must ‘go away and look at’ after falling into relegation zone with Everton defeat

Michael Skubala

Leeds United lost 1-0 to Everton on Saturday to fall into the relegation zone, prompting interim boss Michael Skubala to address one thing they could have “done more” of.

Skubala is currently trying to keep Leeds afloat while they search for a permanent manager. He has been entrusted with overseeing their current run of fixtures, but was unable to inspire them to any share of the points against Everton.

Indeed, Seamus Coleman scored for the hosts in the second half at Goodison Park. As a result, Everton have been able to climb out of the relegation zone, while a win for Bournemouth against Wolves has helped plunge Leeds into the bottom three.

With 15 games of their league season to go, Leeds need to turn things around. And according to Skubala, they need to make more of when they have possession.

Skubala told BBC Sport: “I thought without the ball we did enough, without ball looked defensively strong.

“We knew it would be a second ball game but we lacked a lot with the ball. I thought it would be a 1-0 game and it was.

“We needed to be better with the ball, create more chances and it’s something we will go away and look at.

“We could have been braver and done more with the ball. They are good players, they need to be confident.

“For both teams it was about being strong in mentality, I don’t think we lacked that, we stood up to the challenge. but we were caught out and the lads will go again.”

Asked what his message is for his players, Skubala replied: “Stick together. You’re a good team and good players.

“We just need to work on a few things and we will pull away [from the relegation zone].”

Dyche hopes Everton can build consistency to stay clear of Leeds

Meanwhile, Everton boss Sean Dyche told the same source that his players gave him maximum effort, correctly pointing out that Leeds failed to register a single shot on target.

Dyche said: “I’m very pleased. I asked for maximum effort from the players and they’ve given me that today.

“We limited them – I think, I need to check – to not having a shot on target and it starts from the front players. Neal Maupay and the wide players put in shifts. But with the ball we were better too.

“Scoring goals in this industry takes freedom and there is tightness in the box. If you shoot and you miss, I’m not bothered – as long as you shoot. That freedom will grow with performances and confident.

“We got the ball in good areas and could have scored more. But I’ll take 1-0.

“I’ve spoken to the group about consistency and keeping the values we work to – win, lose or draw. At Liverpool it wasn’t a million miles off, two mistakes change the feel of a game. But today I was pleased the mentality.

“We want to make this a tough place to come and we are doing that with two wins and two clean sheets. Home form is a big help, we want it to become a fortress. We’re getting there but it takes time and belief.

“It’s a one game at a time mentality, that what I believe. The work starts again on Monday and I’ve assured them of that.”

Everton are next in action against Aston Villa in seven days’ time, on the same day Leeds host basement side Southampton, who are fresh from a win over Chelsea.

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