By Jonty Banks

25th Nov, 2022 | 1:10pm

'I love the kid' - Brad Friedel praises Leeds United midfielder Tyler Adams before World Cup test

Former USA captain Brad Friedel has lauded Leeds United midfielder Tyler Adams as he gets set to lead his nation out of the tunnel against England at the World Cup.

The 23-year-old has had a brilliant start to life at Elland Road since making his £25million move from RB Leipzig in the summer and has developed a strong relationship with American coach Jesse Marsch.

In the U.S’ opening draw against Wales, Adams captained his nation for the first time and played a pivotal role in their blistering start, which saw them take an early lead through Timothy Weah.

And Friedel, who worked with Adams when coaching with the Under-19s side, believes his national side has a star in the making.

Writing exclusively in his column for Mail Sport, the 51-year-old said: “Tyler Adams as USA captain? I love this. I love the kid. I really couldn’t speak more highly of an individual that I coached than Tyler.

“I heard how the USA boss, Gregg Berhalter, held a player vote to choose his captain for the World Cup, shortly before the Wales game. And it is not a surprise to me in any way, not one ounce, that Tyler came out on top.

“He’s one of the favourites that I ever coached. He’s a real warrior type, firm in the tackle but what I like most about Tyler is how he handles himself.

“He plays for Leeds in the Premier League and he is about 5 feet and eight inches. But the way he holds himself, the way he plays, his touch and challenge, his strength, you’d think he is over six feet.”

Leadership

Adams proved his quality in the early stages of the Wales match – dictating the tempo of the game through his passing, aggressive press and mature leadership.

At just 23 years old, Adams’ leadership qualities have been clearly displayed by the fact his teammates voted him to lead the U.S. in the Qatar World Cup, and Marsch will be watching with eagle eyes to see how he performs.

The Leeds star will be facing up against England youngsters Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham in midfield in what promises to be a mouth-watering match-up.

If the former RB Leipzig player can stand toe to toe against two of Europe’s brightest talents, then the sky is the limit for Adams.

He has a chance to lead his side to a historic victory against The Three Lions on Friday November 25, and change the whole footballing landscape of America in just 90 minutes of action.

In other news, Leeds star speaks out to media ahead of ‘huge’ development in career this week.