Leeds United manager candidate has made feelings clear on player who ‘could easily play’ in Premier League

Dan James spent the season on loan and Fulham and has already been talked up for a Premier League return by his international boss
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Leeds United managerial candidate Daniel Farke is a long-term admirer of Whites winger Daniel James, if his previous comments on the player are anything to go by.

James spent last season on loan at Fulham after being pushed out of Jesse Marsch’s Elland Road plans. He made 24 Premier League appearances for Marco Silva’s side, scoring two goals and providing an assist.

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His loan deal has now expired but he is currently with the Wales squad as they prepare for UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying games against Armenia and Turkey on Friday and Monday.

Farke is one of many names linked with the Elland Road managerial vacancy as the club seeks to replace Sam Allardyce who left by mutual consent following the end of his short-term deal.

A number of players have been linked with moves away from the club following their relegation but The Athletic report Leeds want to keep James, whoever is appointed as manager.

Farke tried to sign James from Swansea City in 2019 when he was manager of Norwich City, with the winger instead making the move to Manchester United.

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“I’m not surprised by how good James has been,” he said in October 2019 ahead of a Premier League clash between Norwich and Man United.

“I always liked him, but sadly there was no chance for us to get him when Man United called! To deliver that quickly on this level says a lot about his character.”

Wales boss Rob Page feels James is good enough to be playing in the Premier League but did highlight areas the player can improve.

He said: “I do think DJ is a Premier League player and he could easily play there again. If I’m a Premier League manager and I find out he’s available, personally I’d take him.

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“I’m bound to say that because I’m his Welsh manager, but for me he always poses a threat. He still has things to work on but with the pace he’s got it is a brave team that plays a high line against him.

Page added: “He has taken one for the team in recent months because I’ve asked him to play a different role. He likes playing wide left and the way we play now suits us because he gives us the width on the left.

“He’s that option in behind and when you’ve got a tool like that in your armoury it really is effective. In the Premier League, and at international level, he poses a threat. It was a frustrating few months for him when I played him at centre-forward with Gareth (Bale). Now we’ve changed and he is back out in his natural position.”