Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa waxed lyrical about the performance of defender Luke Ayling in Friday night’s 3-0 victory away to Aston Villa.
The Yorkshire giants, who were without inured duo Liam Cooper and Kalvin Phillips, produced a high intensity display to steamroll through Villa in the second-half of their Premier League fixture.
Patrick Bamford, 27, was the hero for his side by netting a second-half hat-trick and they were all finishes with his favoured left-foot.
Despite the fact Bamford stole the headlines with his match-winning contribution, Whites manager Bielsa was fully of praise for Ayling.
“He was quick, he was agile. He defended well, he headed well,” Bielsa said in his post-match press conference, as quoted by the Leeds Live.
“He used the ball well and he transmitted serenity to the rest of the team.”
Ayling, who wore the armband in the absence of Cooper, produced a commanding display at the back and it was made even more impressive by the fact he wasn’t in his usual position.
The 29-year-old right-back moved across to the centre-back role alongside teammate Robin Koch and the duo helped grind out a clean sheet against a Villa team that have started the season on fire.
He made one memorable goal-line clearance to prevent a Jack Grealish goal, plus he was aggressive in his tackling and was the vocal leader in defence.