Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford has praised summer signing Ben White after his impressive debut, and said he looked as if he had been in the Whites’ defence “for years”.
Leeds outclassed Bristol City at Ashton Gate in their Championship opener, dominating for the majority of the game and finishing with a 3-1 victory.
White joined the club on loan from Brighton this summer and was thrown straight into the first team following the departure of centre-back Pontus Jansson.
Jansson, who has been an integral player to the Whites over the past three years, was sold to Brentford earlier this summer.
Leeds have not signed a defender since the Swede’s exit but White’s performance against City indicates that Bielsa’s faith in the 21-year-old may be justified.
Following the game, Bamford hailed the performances of the club’s summer signings.
Speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post, he said: “The boys who came in, (Helder) Costa showed a little bit in the 15 to 20 minutes but Ben White at the back–first game in the Championship and I’ve never seen anyone as composed as him at the back.
“That was a great positive and I think it is important that the new faces do settle in and they have.
“Being stable as a team, there has not been that many changes in terms of personnel.
Obviously, everybody has highlighted that Jansson left but Ben (White) came in and he looked like he had been there for years.
“For a young guy, he looks very composed and a sensible head at the back so that partnership between him and (Liam Cooper) looks good and then there is obviously Costa coming in.”
Bamford’s praise of White is justified. The pressure was on the young man stepping into Jansson’s shoes but he made the ideal start.
You would not have guessed that it was the 21-year-old’s Championship debut, he was calm and composed at the back–providing an excellent combination of solid defence and smart distribution.
Offloading Jansson in the summer was a big call by Bielsa and Leeds, and while the jury is still out on whether it was the right one, early indications look good.