By Dave Woods

1st Aug, 2019 | 5:26pm

MOT player preview: Helder Costa

All eyes will be on Helder Costa this Sunday and Leeds fans will be desperately hoping they get the devastating 16/17 version of the Portuguese winger. 

This is when he delivered 10 goals and eight assists in the Championship for Wolves and looked every inch a Premier League player. 

His career has taken a bit of a dip since and he only scored once in 25 appearances for Wolves in the top-flight, but Bielsa wanted him at Elland Road this season and he will be confident that he can turn him back towards his best.

His last goal for Wolves came in the 3-1 win against Spurs back in December and it was a neat finish. Costa held the line brilliantly before being put through and he ran into the box and slipped the ball neatly past Lloris into the left corner of the net.

Leeds struggled for goals last season and the hope is that Costa will score and also unlock defences in the Championship.

In the 16/17 season he scored 0.32 goals every 90 minutes with an xG of 0.26 [wyscout.com] and registered 0.32 assists with an xA of 0.3. If Bielsa can get him anywhere near these numbers again then Leeds will have every chance of winning promotion.

In the 17/18 season he suffered through injury but his numbers per 90 were still good – 0.24 goals with a slightly higher xG from the previous season at 0.27. Keeping him fit will be key to getting the returns from him that Leeds need.

The 17/18 season saw him take on an impressive 8.09 dribbles per 90 with a success rate of 52%. He made 2.98 passes to the box (55.6% accuracy) and made 6.67 forward passes (70.9% accuracy).

His heat map shows where he operates best and with Jack Harrison already looking like a different player out on the left, Leeds will boast a fearsome attack next season.

The problem could be through the centre again. Patrick Bamford wasn’t good at the end of last season and hasn’t rediscovered his shooting boots in pre-season.

With Kemar Roofe out for the first few weeks of the season, Bamford will have extra weight on his shoulders and needs a fast start. Costa can help him and with Harrison and Costa out wide, he shouldn’t be short of service into the box.

Costa can definitely make a big difference for Leeds. Now the fans want to see the proof, starting on Sunday at Ashton Gate.