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Ben White - 'He oozes quality and class, and moves like a Rolls Royce'

Different reactions have followed Ben White's transfer rumours to Chelsea. Ben White, who is on loan at Leeds United from Premier Leag...

Different reactions have followed Ben White's transfer rumours to Chelsea. Ben White, who is on loan at Leeds United from Premier League side Brighton and Have Albion is an unknown quantity in the eyes of many Chelsea fans, but does he worth the stress? I take a look at the elegant defender, Ben White.

Leeds United are currently enjoying the best defensive record in the Championship, a feat many believe is down to the qualities of Ben White. So, what are his qualities?

Versatility:
Ben White is currently playing at centre-back for Leeds United's but his manager Marcelo Bielsa is often confused about where he fits best, as according to him, White plays like a midfielder. "When you play in a different position you always improve the player," Bielsa told Leeds Live. "When White is at centre-back lots of times he does things like a midfielder. When Phillips plays as a midfielder, a lot of the time he plays as a centre-back. In one play he is a midfielder.  Other times with White at centre-back he goes forward and plays like a centre-back.

"What doesn't happen is a centre-back is a centre-forward or vice versa. This secondary function is part of the primary function. When you change one player in his position it improves him, but you have to have these skills to adapt to a new position: mobility, technique, skill, co-ordination, behaviour to create play, but all these things you can see from watching."

Technical quality:
This basically stands out when you watch his compilations on YouTube. He's magnificent on the ball, his passing range is great, his decision-making is great, his ball control and confidence on the ball are all great. At 22 years he can still improve a lot, but he's already looking good, and many big teams are looking at him. In November, it was reported that Liverpool were monitoring his progress while the manager of his parent club, Graham Potter is also well aware of the progress he is making on loan.

"The feedback about Ben has been really good, and we’re happy with how he’s done so far," Potter told Brighton’s official website.

"It's really good for him and Leeds United too, because it shows that the loan has worked well for everybody.

"He was a player that was really after first-team football, and he’s got that opportunity there. Of course, he’s still our player, but we’re happy that he’s having a good experience and getting better all the time, so we’re delighted."

Overall and Defensive Qualities:
Every centre-back in this Chelsea team is tasked with building from the back, breaking lines and comfortable on the ball.  You can say that he fits perfectly as explained by his former manager at Newport, Michael Flynn:  "The way he reads the game, how comfortable he was on the ball, his positional sense and the performances he put in, I could go on and on. When you consider it was his first loan, he was just exceptional. You could just see that he oozed quality and class, and he moved like a Rolls Royce.

"He came out with the ball which allowed us to play more. His recovery runs and positional sense stopped a lot of attacks against us, and he was very versatile. I played him at right-back, left-back, in a back three and a back four and I know he can play holding midfield as well because he's got the vision, the athleticism and the quality on the ball. I think he'll play in the Premier League and for England." Flynn said.

Defensively, he hasn't been found wanting either. In 22 appearances, according to whoscored.com, he has recorded 40 successful tackles in 48 attempts, 54 interceptions, 28 total blocks, 80 clearances, and won 74 out of 134 aerial challenges, which is clearly a weak point.

In all, he's an interesting player, well worth the risk. It's reported that he's valued at £25m by Brighton. That figure is nothing in today's market. It's obvious that whoever buys him from Brighton is getting his hands on a future England international. Hopefully it's Chelsea.


Written by: Vince(@blue_footy)
Photo Credit: Leeds United official website

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