This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Luke Ayling has revealed to The Athletic that he came close to joining Celtic before moving to Leeds United at the start of the 2016/17 campaign.
Leeds has been Ayling’s home since then and he’s closing in on 145 appearances for the Whites as they search for promotion back to the Premier League.
However, there’s little denying just how big a move to Celtic could have been for the 28-year-old.
So, do you think he will have any regrets about how his career has gone?
Our writers discuss…
With Leeds closing in on a historic return to the Premier League, I don’t think Ayling will have many regrets at the moment if I’m honest.
In past seasons, he may have regretted not signing for the Scottish giants but he has become such an integral player at Leeds since the arrival of Bielsa that I can’t believe he would still feel that way.
The defender looks set to play an important role in the run-in and, if they get there, in the Premier League.
Having come through at Arsenal, you’d imagine Premier League football will have been his aspiration as a young player and it seems he could be set to achieve that under a coach that is widely regarded as one of the world’s finest.
Regrets? What regrets?
Ayling has been a revelation since arriving at Elland Road, and he is loved by the Leeds fans.
The full-back is arguably having the best season of his career and Bielsa seems to be getting the best out of the former Bristol City man, who has somehow managed to find a real goalscoring touch this season.
Of course, Celtic are a massive club and Ayling could have had the opportunity of playing European Football at the Scottish club, but he surely wouldn’t swap what he’s achieved with the Whites this term in what has been a superb season for him personally and the club.
To know you have played a leading role in getting Leeds back into the top-flight of English football, after so long out of it, must be some feeling.
Quiz: The tricky 8-question Leeds United trivia quiz: Can you get 8/8?
No, I don’t think Ayling should have any regrets at all.
Ayling has gone from strength to strength since establishing himself as a top player for Yeovil, changing position and becoming a solid defender.
He was decent for Bristol City, but his game has really improved under Marcelo Bielsa at Leeds, and the Argentine is a major reason as to why Ayling is the player he is today.
He shouldn’t have any regrets, because he’s not a key player for one of the biggest clubs in England who have a massive chance of making this season a memorable one by winning promotion to the Premier League.
A move to Celtic would be desirable for many players as they win trophy after trophy year after year, but he’d surely much rather play for Leeds.