HEAD COACH Marcelo Bielsa has hailed the “complex” skills of Arsenal loanee Eddie Nketiah who will make his Leeds United debut in Tuesday night's Carabao Cup clash at Salford City.
Around 25 clubs were looking to sign the England under-21s striker on loan in the summer transfer window but Whites director of football Victor Orta persuaded the forward to head north for a season-long loan at Elland Road.
The 20-year-old joined United on Thursday’s transfer deadline day and then underwent tests before being introduced to the Elland Road crowd before Saturday’s Championship encounter with Nottingham Forest which ended in a 1-1 draw.
Nketiah then trained with his new team-mates on both Sunday and Monday with head coach Bielsa revealing the striker’s quality has become apparent quickly.
Nketiah has been on form for both Arsenal and England’s youth sides with the forward already having 19 senior appearances for the Gunners under his belt and also three goals.
Arsenal boss Unai Emery initially wanted the striker to spend the 2019-20 season at the Emirates but eventually agreed to send the striker on loan in order to maximise his game time.
A first outing for Leeds will now arrive in Tuesday night's first-round Carabao Cup clash at League Two outfit Salford who are part owned by former Manchester United stars Gary Neville, Phil Neville, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Nicky Butt who each owns 10 per cent.
“All the minutes that he has had with the national team and with Arsenal too, we could watch these minutes,” said Bielsa of Nketiah. “Then I have an idea about what the skills are that the player has and the capabilities of the player too.
“In these two days where we were working with him it’s very easy to show in training what he’s showing in the games. He’s a complex player because he has a lot of capabilities.”
Reflecting on how Nketiah had settled into life at Leeds and if he would play a part at Salford, Bielsa explained: “On Friday and Saturday he was doing some evaluations and tests.
“Yesterday he did real football training and the same as today, he was training normal with the group too.
“I don’t know how many minutes but he will be involved.”