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Jordan Botaka has turned his career around after poor Leeds United spell

Leeds United

Jordan Botaka has turned his career around after poor Leeds United spell

The former Leeds star has become captain of Belgian club Sint-Truiden.

Leeds United fans might be surprised to hear how Jordan Botaka is getting on since leaving the club.

The DR Congo winger joined Leeds in the summer of 2015 from Dutch side Excelsior. The club was desperate to add wide options to the team and Botaka was snapped up then Leeds United boss Uwe Rosler.

However, times swiftly changed at Elland Road. Rosler did not last long and Botaka struggled under new boss Steve Evans.

GENT, BELGIUM – SEPTEMBER 16: Daichi Kamada celebrates with Jordan Botaka after scoring a goal during the Jupiler Pro League match between KAA Gent and Sint-Truidense V.V. at Ghelamco Arena on September 16, 2018 in Gent, Belgium. (Photo by Vincent Van Doornick/Isosport/MB Media/Getty Images)

The tale of the tape was simple. Botaka played 14 games for Leeds, registering just one assist. He was subsequently loaned to Charlton Athletic for 2016-17 and released by Leeds in July 2017.

Botaka headed back to Belgium, where he had previously played for Club Brugge, signing a three-year deal at Sint-Truiden. He has certainly not looked back.

After a slow start on the left-wing, Botaka has been reinvented in recent months. Used either as a right-back or right wing-back, the DR Congo international has thrived for his new team. He was even named team captain by new boss Marc Brys in the summer.


“It remains special to be played as a defender. I adapt as well as possible and I think I have learned a lot since the start of the season. 
 

“If the trainer would tell me that he will play me again as an attacker, he might make me the happiest man in Sint-Truiden and surroundings, but the team interest is paramount.”

 


This season, he has played nearly every minute of Sint-Truiden’s season and is a firm fan favourite. Considering he is only 25-years-old, it does appear Leeds did find a player with promise but simply played him in the wrong position.

 

Considering his newly found leadership skills and positional versatility, he would be a perfect fit in a Marcelo Bielsa team right about now.

The irony in football.

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