Leeds United completed their first arrival of the summer yesterday, with Chelsea’s playmaker Lewis Baker arriving on loan.
For many fans, looking at his 2017-18 season, it is an underwhelming recruit. Baker was fit for the entire season but played just 14 times during a loan spell at rivals Middlesbrough.
However, his time in Holland should be the indicator Leeds look to for inspiration. The Chelsea star spent two seasons at feeder club Vitesse Arnhem in the Eredivisie. During his time at the club, Baker became one of the best players in Dutch football.
The playmaker featured 73 times for the club and, in his second season in particular, developed a reputation as an ice-blooded star. For Dutch fans, it was often a surprise to discover he was English.
In the 2016-17 campaign, he scored 15 times in 39 games and became well known for his excellent set-piece ability, something Leeds United currently lack in their current fold.
Last season Baker arrived at Boro under the management of former Leeds boss Garry Monk. when he was surprisingly sacked and replaced with former West Brom boss Tony Pulis, things changed. Pulis barely used him and Baker’s season became a blight on his young career.
Now, at Leeds under Marcelo Bielsa, Baker will be encouraged to play his game and get involved in the attacking game.
If he can perform like he did two seasons ago, then Leeds United have found themselves an absolute gem.