This article is part of Football League World’s ‘Player view’ series, this content strand is where we put ourselves in the shoes of a given player, and offer an opinion-based outlook on the situation at hand…
When Stuart Dallas signed for Leeds United in 2015, he would have been hoping to achieve a great deal of success as a winger at Elland Road.
However, despite initially making a positive impact in this position during his first season with the Whites, the Northern Ireland international ultimately struggled to maintain his consistency at Championship level.
After several campaigns in which he drifted in and out of Leeds’ starting eleven, Dallas was presented with an ultimatum following the arrival of Marcelo Bielsa in 2018.
With the likes of Pablo Hernandez, Jack Harrison and Jack Clarke all moving ahead of the former Brentford man in the Whites’ pecking order, he was asked by his manager to cover at left-back.
Although he had never previously featured in this position for Leeds, he accepted the challenge and went on to produce a number of promising performances in the Championship.
Whilst Ezgjan Alioski eventually emerged as a starter at full-back during the second-half of the previous campaign, Dallas has since switched to the right-hand side of the defence.
Currently thriving in his new role, Dallas has started all eight of Leeds’ games in the Championship this season.
Recently rewarded with a new contract, the defender will be determined to help the Whites launch a sustained push for promotion over the coming months.
However, despite his recent performances, Dallas ought to be worried about Luke Ayling’s impending return.
A mainstay in Leeds’ back-four during the previous campaign, the 28-year-old has yet to feature this year after having ankle surgery in the summer (via the Yorkshire Evening Post).
Yet having featured on two occasions for the Whites’ Under-23 side last week, Ayling will now be eyeing up Dallas’ place in Bielsa’s starting eleven.
Whilst Dallas offers more of a threat going forward, Leeds could benefit from the presence of a player who excels in the defensive side of the game.
In order to keep Ayling at bay, Dallas must deliver an eye-catching display against Charlton Athletic on Saturday as a failure to do so could result in him being dropped by Bielsa.