Dom Matteo has told the Yorkshire Evening Post that he believes Leeds United star Stuart Dallas is quickly becoming the club’s version of Liverpool star James Milner – as the Northern Irishman continues to show versatility in the Premier League.
Dallas, 29, is the club’s first-choice left-back and started there against Liverpool and Fulham. But against Sheffield United, he was moved into central midfield in order to field a back three and cope with Sheffield United’s two strikers.
The former Brentford star – a £1.3million (Sky Sports) signing in 2015 – has now clocked up a huge 195 appearances in all competitions and is easily one of the most important players in the Leeds side. Milner, meanwhile, remains a Leeds icon.
The 34-year-old played 50 times for Leeds before leaving following the club’s relegation from the top tier in 2004. Matteo compared the £140,000-a-week (Spotrac) Liverpool star to Dallas – given the duo’s versatility.
“Stuart Dallas moved into midfield and showed, again, that he’s so important to the team,” Matteo said. “I believe his best position is in the midfield area because of his athleticism and what he brings.
“He’s a bit like James Milner, because he does a good job wherever Bielsa plays him. If you speak to James, he likes to play in the same position and that’s midfield. I don’t think Dallas is that bothered, he just gets on with his job.
“He’s underrated maybe, but not by Leeds fans. He’s a firm favourite.”
TBR’s view – Dallas turns 30 this season, but is still crucial
Dallas has been excellent for Leeds since the arrival of Marcelo Bielsa. Like Liam Cooper, Kalvin Phillips, Luke Ayling and others, Dallas can say his career has improved massively under the guidance of the Argentine.
He has gone from a mediocre Championship player to an established Premier League star. He turns 30 in April, but given his versatility and fitness – he can go on for years at the top level, just like Milner has done at Liverpool.