Leeds United defender Luke Ayling has claimed that winger Pablo Hernandez is the best player he has played alongside during his time at Elland Road.
Having joined the club back in the summer of 2016, Ayling has certainly come across some impressive players during his time in Yorkshire, although it seems none compare to the spectacular Spaniard.
Taking part in a Q and A session on the Yorkshire Evening Post’s website on Thursday afternoon, Ayling was asked who his best ever Leeds United teammate was, with the right-back emphatically claiming: “I don’t think anyone comes close to Pablo [Hernandez], the stuff he can do on a pitch, the skill level he’s got and what he’s done in his career.”
Explaining what has been like playing alongside Hernandez, Ayling continued: “I signed a few weeks after him so I’ve played pretty much every game I’ve played with Pablo.
“I had him in front of me for three years and it was the easiest thing, I just had to pass to Pablo, go round him and see what happened.”
Indeed, it seems it isn’t just within Leeds circles that Hernandez is top of Ayling’s personal standings, with the defender going on to add: “Pablo’s the best player I’ve played with in general, talent-wise there’s no one gets close to him.”
Having initially joined Leeds on loan early in the 2016/17 season, Hernandez made his move to Elland Road permanent the following year, with the Spaniard making a total of 150 appearances in all competitions for the Yorkshire club, scoring 33 goals and providing 35 assists.
Both Ayling and Hernandez signed new contracts with Leeds earlier this season, committing their long-term futures to the club in the process.
There probably isn’t much surprise here really.
Ever since his arrival at Elland Road, Hernandez has been producing moments of magic that have been key to helping Leeds push their way up the Championship table, to the point where they now look odds on for promotion to the Premier League.
Indeed, you only need to look at the length of contract that the club gave to the 34-year-old earlier this season, to see just how highly regarded he is around Elland Road.
That is something that Ayling has only emphasised here further, and you feel he may not be the only player at the club who would give that sort of answer when asked that particular question.