'Everybody recognises him in the locker room' - Andrea Radrizzani names the Leeds United player who has impressed him

The Whites owner was speaking at a conference about leadership.

Thursday, 15th April 2021, 9:49 am

Andrea Radrizzani believes Leeds United captain Liam Cooper has become a "fantastic leader" at Elland Road under Marcelo Bielsa.

The Whites skipper was handed the armband halfway through his debut season at the club in 2014 following his arrival from Chesterfield.

Cooper, though, hasn't always been a constant in defence during his eight years in LS11.

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The 29-year-old was forced to battle for his place before retaining the captaincy following Bielsa's surprise appointment in 2018.

Cooper went on to lead his boyhood team back to the Premier League after 16 years away last season, lifting the Championship trophy.

He has also made 23 appearances in the top flight this term amid a number of injury absences but will miss the next three games after his controversial sending off at Manchester City.

"Talking about leadership, I remember when Liam Cooper started his first experience as captain," United's owner told the MIP Alumni Conference.

Leeds United club captain Liam Cooper leads out at his team-mates at Elland Road. Pic: Getty

"I could see that he wasn't ready but after a few talks and some times and experience and ups and downs, he became a fantastic leader. Everybody recognises him in the locker room but not only in the locker room, in the entire club.

"We see his leadership flourishing and I think no-one was really born as a leader.

"With that mentality, I think leadership is something you develop and you learn from mistakes and you become a leader over time, it's not [achieved] in one day so it's a process to become a leader."