By Mark Smith

16th Nov, 2021 | 9:10am

Phil Hay: Marcelo Bielsa quietly admires John Swift amid strong Leeds United links

Phil Hay has insisted that Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa quietly admires Reading playmaker John Swift amid strong links this weekend.

The Star shared over the weekend that the Whites were plotting a bid for the former Chelsea man to win the race for his signature.

Hay shared that it would make perfect sense for Leeds to bring in a midfielder in January rather than the summer, which will be much busier.

Writing in the comments section of his latest piece for The Athletic, Hay shared how Bielsa feels behind the scenes over a potential move.

“I can definitely see the value in signing a centre mid in the window, partly to help this season but partly to create one less job for the summer window (which will be far more active),” he wrote.

“Was interesting to see John Swift linked over the weekend because Swift is someone Bielsa quietly admires.”

Bielsa watching.

There aren’t many better plaudits to have in world football than Bielsa.

Swift has been going about his business very quietly once again in the Championship, but given his record it is a major surprise not to see his name plastered everywhere.

In only 17 Championship games this season, the 26-year-old has been involved in 15 goals – a sensational statistic.

It is no surprise to see the Whites interested, with Swift having all the ability to replace Mateusz Klich in the squad over the next couple of years.

Playing ahead of Kalvin Phillips could be perfect to give him that freedom he clearly needs to express himself, but we have to be honest, we would be surprised if he wasn’t a squad depth option compared to a guaranteed starter each week.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites are ready to make major January signings with unexpected deals to force action