‘Wow’, ‘Bielsa found the key’: Some Leeds fans react to 23-year-old’s message
Some Leeds United fans have been reacting on social media after Ben White claimed – via Leeds Live – that he was not made by Marcelo Bielsa after making the England squad.
Gareth Southgate named the former Whites loan star as his replacement for Trent Alexander-Arnold for Euro 2020 earlier this week. The defender had initially failed to make the cut for the final 26 having featured in the provisional 33-man list.
It marks a drastic rise over the past 24-months for the 23-year-old. Leeds signed White on loan from Brighton having never played in a division higher than the third-tier. Yet the centre-half proved pivotal to their promotion, staring all 46 Championship fixtures.
His Whites breakthrough also helped White become a mainstay for Brighton, while his efforts under Bielsa caught Southgate’s attention. The England boss namechecked the defender (Independent) and Kalvin Phillips as players he was monitoring in June of last year.
But White believes his journey to the Three Lions squad started long before he moved to Elland Road for 2019/20. Having made his debut against Austria last week and first start against Romania on Sunday.
“I wasn’t made last year,” White said. “I’ve worked hard for ten years, and it doesn’t just suddenly just come in a year when you do well. I had two loans before that and played quite a few games there, so I think that’s helped me build and perform at the level I have.”
Leeds fans react to White playing down Bielsa influence
But while White argues that his journey to the England squad began before joining Leeds, some Whites fans disagree. Instead, a few believe it was Bielsa’s influence that put him on Southgate’s radar and made him who he is.
As well as White being an England international, Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal are all keeping tabs on the Seagull’s £50million star (Daily Mail). Leeds had sought to retain his services following the defender’s loan spell but saw a string of bids rejected (Sky Sports).
Although others offer more reflective takes on White’s comment. As they believe Bielsa’s influence was a factor in White’s development but accept it was not the only one.
So, here are some of the messages shared..
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