Dan James describes Leeds United team-mate as a 'magician' after being left stunned by his abilities

Daniel James has described fellow Leeds United wide man and Brazil star Raphinha as a 'magician'.

By Joe Urquhart
Saturday, 13th November 2021, 10:19 am
Updated Saturday, 13th November 2021, 10:20 am

The 24-year-old winger - who joined from rivals Manchester United on summer deadline day - has enjoyed a whirlwind few months since making the switch to Elland Road from across the Pennines.

James has been selected out wide and through the middle by head coach Marcelo Bielsa amid injuries in what has had to be a quick adjustment into the starting line-up.

The Wales international has made 10 appearances so far with the majority of those coming on the opposite flank to Whites key man Raphinha.

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Leeds United team-mates Dan James and Raphinha celebrate a goal at Norwich City. Pic: Getty

Tite opted to include Raphinha in his Brazil squad for the first time last month and the Leeds man took his club form to the international stage in South America.

Raphinha has bagged two goals and two assists in his first four caps for the Selecao to go along with his five Premier League goals in 10 games this season.

"He's a magician," James told FIFA.com of his Leeds team-mate's abilities.

"He’s always been a great player – I played against him at Manchester United and he was always great – but he’s improved so much.

"He fully deserved his Brazilian call-up and I think since he got it, he’s pushed on even more, he’s even more confident. He can do absolutely anything on the pitch. It’s great playing with him."

James completed the switch from the Red Devils in a deal worth in the region of £25m in August.

Asked who had impressed him in the Old Trafford squad during his brief spell at the club, James said: "I could name so many who impressed me as players and professionals. The two who most come to mind are Bruno [Fernandes] and Marcus [Rashford].

"The way Bruno came from Portugal and settled straight in at Manchester United… the assists, the goals. I think in his first season he beat the most goals and assists contributions in a season for a midfielder. Unbelievable.

"He takes that pressure on and he works so hard. The other one is Marcus. He’s an absolutely unbelievable player.

"To put in the performances he has, when he’s been carrying injuries as well… just full respect to him. He takes the pressure on, he always performs. And it’s not just on the pitch where he impresses me but off the pitch too. He fully deserved his MBE."