Leeds United fans in awe of 'classy' Diego Llorente after crunching tackle on Cristiano Ronaldo in Spain v Portugal clash

The £18m signing is yet to make his debut for Leeds United but Diego Llorente impressed in Spain’s draw with Portugal on Wednesday.
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Leeds United fans kept a close eye on 27-year-old defender Diego Llorente when he was named in Spain’s starting line-up for their friendly with Portugal on Wednesday evening.

Both of Leeds’ summer signings, Rodrigo and Llorente, started for Luis Enrique’s side in the match which ended goalless.

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Since signing for Leeds, 29-year-old striker Rodrigo has already featured five times for Marcelo Bielsa’s side as well as featuring for Spain in their 1-1 draw with Germany in September, so Leeds fans have already seen plenty of their new number 20.

However, on Wednesday night United supporters got only their first glimpse of Llorente in action since he moved to Elland Road from La Liga side Real Sociedad last month.

Diego Llorente put in a solid performance against Portugal, which included this crunching tackle on Cristiano Ronaldo, helping his side keep a clean sheet.

Leeds fans were seemingly impressed with Llorente’s contribution on Wednesday. Here’s what some Twitter user’s thought of his performance:

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@Kira78795280: “Just seen Diego Llorente’s performance last night... Wow mind blowing!”

Diego Llorente put in a crunching tackle on Cristiano RonaldoDiego Llorente put in a crunching tackle on Cristiano Ronaldo
Diego Llorente put in a crunching tackle on Cristiano Ronaldo

@DoctorT1992: “Diego Llorente is ridiculously good at football.”

@LeedsJimQLD: “Just watched the full 90 of Portugal vs Spain from this morning. Llorente looked solid though he did head the ball out under no pressure a couple of times. Spain lost the ability to get behind Portugal when Rodrigo was subbed at HT.”

@gazLUFC4: “What we do with Llorente now is going to be interesting. He has to Llorente has to be getting into our side soon, he is a pretty classy operator and plays watching him. I mean suggesting a back 3 wouldn’t be out of question but one has to go.”

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@EthanFromOnline: “Diego Llorente showed a lot of what he typically does - a good ball striker, probably the best of our centre backs. Sharp passer on the short and mid range ones (again, probably our best there too). Firm when he goes to hit too.”

@OooahhBerardi: “Llorente has to be getting into our side soon, he is a pretty classy operator.”

Replying to Diego Llorente’s tweet after the game, @tbwleeds commented, “Well played Diego!”

The YEP’s very own @LeeSobotYEP tweeted, “Full game for Llorente at centre-back as Spain shut out Portugal in 0-0 draw - no mean feat against Ronaldo (off after 73 mins) and later Jota. Portugal hit the bar twice but it’s a clean sheet.”

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The defender has been backed by boss Bielsa after questions were asked as to whether he would be able to adapt to life in the Premier League. While the 64-year-old Argentine says Llorente is fit to play for Leeds, he is yet to feature for the Whites.

He has instead had to make do with a place on the bench, being kept out of the starting 11 by 24-year-old defender Robin Koch, who has also been busy in this international break, featuring in Germany's 3-3 with Turkey on Wednesday.

It remains to be seen where Llorente will fit into the Leeds team after decent displays from the defence recently against Sheffield United and Manchester City.

We could see Bielsa hand him his debut in Leeds’ next game against Wolves, which takes place after the international break at 8pm on October 19 at Elland Road. If Llorente was to feature against Wolves, he would be the 839th player to make his debut for United.

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Beforehand though, Llorente could add to his six Spain caps as Luis Enrique’s side faced Switzerland and Ukraine in the Nations League.

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