Former Leeds United goalkeeper Paul Robinson has compared on-loan centre-back Ben White to Everton’s Michael Keane, saying they are from the ‘same mould’.
Since signing on loan from Brighton in the summer, Ben White has been an absolute revelation for Marcelo Bielsa’s side. So far the defender has been an ever-present in the league, as part of the league’s meanest defence.
Leeds have conceded just eight goals this season after 15 games and kept eight clean sheets too, helping them to third in the table. They would possibly be higher if the attack was as efficient as the defence, it has to be said.
White’s performances, in particular, have been singled out for praise by many who weren’t expecting him to set the world alight this season, as he came in to replace the departed Pontus Jansson. Those performances have been enough to warrant links to European Champions Liverpool, who are keen to find a replacement to Dejan Lovren.
In an interview with Football Insider, Paul Robinson was full of praise for Leeds’ star signing and was comparing his abilities as a centre-back to Everton’s Michael Keane, whom he has spent time with at both Burnley and Blackburn.
“He’s not had the best of start to the season, it’s hard when you’re a player who’s struggling for form and struggling for confidence when your team’s not playing well around you.
“I played with Michael Keane at Burnley, he came on loan to Blackburn as a youngster as well so I played a couple of times with him.
“He is very much in the same mould as Ben White at Leeds, very much that type of centre-half, comfortable with the ball at his feet.”
“His positioning at times is questionable, he is very, very much a confidence player.
“His performances this year and the way that he’s cost England goals, it’s been uncharacteristic for him but he’s got that in his game.”
There is justification for Robinson’s words here, despite the fact that White and Keane are at complete opposite ends of the form spectrum. What Keane perhaps has that White hasn’t yet managed to prove in a Leeds shirt is the gritty and ugly side to defending.
White will get chance to showcase that aspect to his game this season but with his terrific start and the fact Leeds are on top in most games, the opportunity rarely arises.
The centre-back will just be hoping to continue turning heads in the footballing world and help in Leeds’ push towards promotion.