Marcelo Bielsa has told his pre-Brighton press conference – as per Leeds Live – that he and the rest of the Leeds United squad still “admire” and “love” Brighton defender Ben White following his loan spell at Leeds last season.
White, 23, earned himself fan favourite reputation among Leeds fans last season as he played every single one of the club’s 49 matches in all competitions – as Bielsa guided Leeds to promotion in the Argentine’s second season.
However, his move to Leeds was a loan deal without a permanent clause and it allowed Brighton to reject any forthcoming offers. Sky Sports stated that Brighton rejected three Leeds offers, the largest worth £25million.
White has since signed a contract with Brighton and become first choice for the Seagulls, playing right-back, centre-back and even in midfield. Asked about White ahead of Saturday’s clash, Bielsa stated he is still admired at Leeds.
“All of us here admire him as a player. We respect him and love him as a human being. He was an excellent professional as well as a team-mate. I hope his career allows him to grow because he deserves it,” Bielsa said.
TBR’s view – Future Leeds move, does it still have a chance?
Of course. With Brighton in the midst of a proper relegation scrap at this midpoint in the campaign – dropping down to the Championship may force Graham Potter’s men to sell one of their best assets in White.
Leeds, though only a few points and places above Brighton, look much more likely to avoid the drop at this stage. Should they remain in the Premier League and Brighton go down, a move could easily materialise.
Brighton might demand a huge £50million, though, according to The Sun.