This article is part of Football League World’s ‘Comment’ series, this content strand is where the author of the article issues their personal opinion on the topic at hand…
Brighton boss Graham Potter has revealed he is looking forward to working with defender Ben White next season following his successful loan spell at Leeds United.
White has become an integral figure for Leeds since completing his season-long loan move from Brighton over the summer, with the centre-back having played every minute of league action for the Elland Road side during their promotion push.
The 22-year-old has formed an impressive centre-back partnership with club captain Liam Cooper throughout the campaign, with Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa having also utilised White in a central defensive midfield role at times this term.
The fact White has adapted so well to life at Leeds means the Yorkshire club will surely push to secure his services on a permanent deal before next season, with the defender having clearly developed his game under Bielsa’s careful guidance.
However, Potter’s latest comments suggest he has differing plans for White’s immediate future, with the Seagulls boss clearly viewing the former Newport County loanee as a key part of his plans at the Amex Stadium moving forward.
“I’m aware of his progress and we keep a track of that, he’s been doing well,” Potter said, as per the Yorkshire Evening Post.
“I’m delighted with the experience he’s had so far this season with Leeds and we’re looking forward to working with him in the future.”
This statement suggests Leeds may find it difficult to tempt Brighton into doing business over White during the off-season, but it certainly should not prevent the Elland Road side from pushing for a permanent deal for the centre-back for a number of reasons.
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It is clear to see that White is feeling settled at Leeds after quickly establishing himself as such a key figure for Bielsa’s side, and this fact alone means the centre-back would surely be open to a permanent move to Elland Road when the time comes.
Furthermore, there may be uncertainty regarding the remainder of the season due to the recent fixture suspension, but Leeds’ potential promotion to the Premier League would definitely work in their favour when it comes to retaining White’s services.
The centre-back has clearly enjoyed his most successful season in senior football to date with the Yorkshire outfit, and the rate of his development means the chance to keep working Bielsa for the foreseeable future would also definitely appeal to him.
It is true that both Brighton and Leeds will be more than keen on White’s services for next season, but his experiences with the Whites during their promotion bid this term means a permanent switch to Elland Road could now be his growing preference.