Leeds United utility man Stuart Dallas said that Marcelo Bielsa has “transformed” him as a player by making him play such a wide range of roles.
An ever-present in the Premier League this season, Dallas has featured at left-back, right-back, in central midfield and on the wing already this season.
Speaking to The Football Show on Sky Sports, the Northern Ireland international said that Bielsa placed a great emphasis on versatility.
“I find it really beneficial watching clips of players before the game,” Dallas told The Football Show (10:41).
“Playing at left-back has benefits for me and the team, but I have been working on my left-foot. If there is one thing our manager at Leeds wants us to do, it is wanting us to play lots of positions. It can be a hindrance to some players, but it has really helped me. He has transformed me.”
Despite being used all over the pitch for Leeds this season, Dallas has had no less of an impact. So far this season, the 29-year-old ranks fourth in the division in terms of successful defensive pressures and fourth in terms of tackle and interceptions completed (via FBRef).
While he is used most often at full-back, Dallas has retained his attacking instincts and continues to play an important role going forward. From eight league starts, he has scored one goal, and averages 0.9 shots, 0.4 key passes and 0.6 dribbles per game (via WhoScored).
With injuries mounting and the demands of the Premier League as relentless as ever, a player like Dallas is invaluable and Bielsa clearly has plenty of admiration for him. However, Dallas also owes a lot to the Argentine, who has helped him unlock a side of his game that was not previously obvious.
In other Leeds United news, View: Time for Bielsa to unleash rarely seen Leeds 23y/o – starting v Arsenal