Marcelo Bielsa compares Leeds United's Stuart Dallas to Argentina and Inter Milan legend

WHITES head coach Marcelo Bielsa has compared Leeds United's versatile and "potent" Stuart Dallas to an Argentina and Inter Milan legend.

Monday, 19th April 2021, 12:47 pm

Dallas joined Leeds for a little over £1m from Brentford back in August 2015 and nearly six years later is one of the club's Premier League stars.

The Northern Irishman has also been used in a whole host of positions and Bielsa has drawn parallels between Dallas and former Inter Milan and Argentina legend Javier Zanetti, as well as former Newell's Old Boys and Boca Juniors ace Julio Saldana - who also played for Argentina.

Dallas, who celebrates his 30th birthday today, signed for Leeds as a winger and was used on both flanks before being fielded as both a right back and a left back.

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HUGE PRAISE: For Leeds United's 'potent' Stuart Dallas from Whites head coach Marcelo Bielsa. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images.

The Northern Ireland international has more recently been deployed as a centre midfielder and bagged a brace including a 91st-minute winner in last weekend's 2-1 victory at champions-elect Manchester City.

Asked if there were any other players that he had previously worked with that had been as versatile as Dallas, former Argentina boss Bielsa said: "Yes I had a player like this, for example Javier Zanetti and also Julio Saldana when I first managed at Newell’s in my first experience.

"Those two players are very alike Dallas in terms of their versatility.

“He is a very potent, powerful player.

"He can play with either foot, with his right or his left, he is good at defending.

“He has the capacity to combine as well as make runs that allows him to flourish in the middle and he has a change of rhythm and surprise when he attacks.

"It is very difficult to find all of that in just one player.”

Quizzed about Dallas showing a new side to his game in the win against City - and asked about the scope for yet more improvement from his players from within, Bielsa said: "The place that Dallas occupies in the team at the moment is the role that (Mateusz) Klich usually had.

"In the majority of the games that the team played, he was one of the best players in our team.

"When Dallas started to play in this position he started to show different ways of playing in this position.

"To score goals was a clear expectation when he started to play in this position and as the minutes go by he manages to have a marked influence or definition in the finalisation of our chances.

"In this sense it's something that's a novelty. Even though it's a novelty, it's within his facilities as he's managed to obtain it."

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Thank you Laura Collins