In a hostile encounter, Whites winger Luis Sinisterra was handed his marching orders in the 48th minute by referee Stuart Atwell. He was given a first yellow for a needless foul on John McGinn before earning a second for blocking the ball when Douglas Luiz tried to take a quick free-kick.
Watching from the stands due to his own ban, manager Jesse Marsch would’ve been less than impressed by the Colombian international but perhaps even less so with the player he trusted to lead the line – Rodrigo.
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The Spanish veteran cut an anonymous figure for much of the 68 minutes he was on the pitch and at times, it looked as if Leeds were two men down rather than one.
As per SofaScore, the 31-year-old – who was starting over Patrick Bamford – registered only 25 touches of the ball, which was comfortably the fewest of all of Leeds’ starters. Even substitute Junior Firpo got close to beating that in just 32 minutes of action, whilst goalkeeper Illan Meslier managed nearly double (48).
With his little involvement, Rodrigo had three shots, of which none were on target, meaning 50% of Leeds’ total efforts in the final third were wasted, due to the misfiring forward.
Elsewhere, the one-time £27m club-record signing was weak in his battles as he struggled to cope against the aerial presence of Ezri Konsa and Tyrone Mings, both of whom had his number. Indeed, he won just two of his eight duels (25%).
LeedsLive reporter Beren Cross was less than impressed by Rodrigo too as he graded him as the Whites’ joint-worst performer at Elland Road in his post-match ratings column.
‘[He] looked smothered in attack and isolated. Rusty one-two attempts,’ the journalist wrote.
A lot of blame could be put on Sinisterra for his foolish actions but the display from Rodrigo up top left little to be desired and considering Marsch made the big call to start him over the returning Bamford, following his hat-trick for the U21s too, then he could feel massively let down.
It’s no wonder that the Spanish passenger has been described as “non-existent” in the past because he was exactly that on Sunday night.