By Nick Ware

23rd Apr, 2021 | 8:45pm

Nigel Martyn claims Ian Poveda could kick-start Leeds career with summer loan move

Nigel Martyn claims a summer loan move could work wonders for Ian Poveda’s Leeds United career, after a stop-start 2020/21 campaign with the Whites.

Poveda, 21, joined Marcelo Bielsa’s side from Manchester City in January 2020 and appeared four times in the Championship as Leeds sauntered to the title.

It’s been tough going for him in the Premier League with 11 outings yielding zero starts or goal contributions, and he missed every February fixture through injury.

But he was a bright spark off the bench against Liverpool on Monday in his first appearance since January 16, and he will be looking to make an impact in the Whites’ final six games to prove he has an Elland Road future, though ex-Leeds goalkeeper Martyn thinks he might be best served developing elsewhere for a year.

“It depends what game time he is getting, if it is good game then yes – going out on loan is better than 10 or 15 minutes here or there,” Martyn told Leeds United.News.

“It is an opportunity to build your confidence and build your fitness in match situations. You often go away and do well, and come back, chomping at the bit, do well in training and the manager can give you a chance.”

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Braced for a breakthrough?

Bielsa doesn’t seem enamoured with letting players leaving on loan just because they are not getting game time, preferring to weave his magic on them at Thorp Arch and see their development first hand.

But he might have to bite the bullet on this one as Poveda is surely yearning for his first proper chance in senior football.

He was a regular for Manchester City’s Under-23s side and he’s also featured on nine occasions for the second-string Whites who recently bagged themselves the Premier League 2 (Division 2) title. [Transfermarkt]

With Raphinha and Jack Harrison firmly installed as first-choice wingers it will be difficult for Poveda to displace either one of them next season, but he could be elevated to the go-to deputy if Helder Costa leaves the club after his underwhelming season.

It’s a difficult balancing act, but we back Bielsa to make the right judgement on this one.

In other Leeds United news, Phil Hay responds when asked what he’s heard from inside Leeds on ESL.