Leeds’ early season humiliation continued last night as The Whites were dumped out of the League Cup by neigbours Bradford City,

Once again the game swung on a careless red card, Leeds’ fourth in six games and already twice what we received last season.

Some may argue that David Hockaday has therefore been unlucky, but when you’re picking up red cards with such alarming regularity, you have to stop cursing your luck and start creating your own.

Luke Murphy, our latest red card recipient, could have no arguments with the referees decision for both the yellow cards he received were a result of stupid challenges, neither of which were necessary.

Whether it’s badly disciplined players, a formation the players are so uncomfortable in they’re making silly errors trying to fill the gaps or something else entirely, only Sam Byram’s was questionable, the rest were fully deserved and can’t be written off as bad luck.

What’s really frustrating is Luke Murphy shouldn’t have been on the pitch in the first place. In the opening games of this campaign he’s probably been our most disappointing player, yet his selection is seemingly guaranteed under David Hockaday. Surely this was a chance to try something different?

A League Cup tie against minnows like Bradford City is the perfect opportunity to rotate the squad and give some youngsters a go, perhaps play that 18-year-old attacking midfielder we signed from Milan then hid in a broom cupboard? Or maybe the homegrown youngsters our future allegedly hinges on? We could even bring Alex Mowatt (who is fully fit, in case you’re wondering) in from the cold.

Instead, Leeds went with a hugely experienced squad including the likes of Michael Tonge and David Norris, along with regulars such as Luke Murphy, Jason Pearce and Billy Sharp, players who’ve a long season ahead and should surely be rested on such occasions?

It’s a line-up that makes no sense when you have players like Dominic Poleon and Lewis Cook desperately trying to make an impression and deserving of the opportunity ahead of journeymen like Tonge and Norris who have no future at the club.

Had The Hock heeded calls to play the youth and a few more of the 12 players we’ve signed this summer, I could sit here and accept his excuses – it does take new players time to gel, inexperienced players will make mistakes. But only Bianchi was new to Leeds’ midfield, only Cooper new in defence. This wasn’t a squad who met yesterday.

Before the dismissal, there were some encouraging signs for Leeds. One/two touch passing moves, (albeit, against League One opposition) were good to see and we were controlling the fixture fairly comfortably – as you’d expect given how experienced the squad was.

The trouble is, it wasn’t particularly exciting to watch because we weren’t creating anything noteworthy. Matt Smith headed a few chances high and wide and that was about it really. We don’t stretch teams well enough and create the gaps Billy Sharp would be deadly in, it’s all very narrow, predictable and fairly easy to defend against – and this was a League One defence, not a top six Championship defence.

It’s not like we don’t have the players to address this either, all we have to do is return to the 4-5-1/4-3-3 formation we always look more threatening playing and have two from Ajose, Poleon and Antenucci playing alongside Sharp. Instead we persist with the God-awful diamond system.

With ten men, Bradford took control of the tie and a goal looked inevitable but it was to be Leeds who struck first, Matt Smith finally hitting the target to head home a good cross from David Norris.

Only 8 minutes left on the clock, it looked to be snatch and grab stuff from Leeds. Even with ten men, you’d expect an experienced Championship side to contain a League One side without too much trouble. Unless you’re Leeds United of course, then you know better by now.

It took the hosts just 3 minutes to equalise with a great 20-yard strike from Knott. The chance came from a corner headed clear and if I was going to be picky, there’s a case for the defence to be rushing out quicker after clearing their lines, which could have resulted in more bodies in his way, but there wasn’t much time to react in fairness and it was an excellent strike.

Bradford’s winner was a good goal too, Hanson using a well-paced cross to score a powerful header, but Liam Cooper allowed Hanson to get in front of him making things much easier.

Crowd trouble followed which led to a hefty nine minutes of added time, but it wasn’t enough for Leeds to level things. A disappointing result, but few will be surprised after the disastrous start we’ve made to the season.

On and on…