Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa

Leeds United youngster Jordan Stevens could have a big part to play for Marcelo Bielsa over the busy festive period, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Leeds striker and lifelong fan at Elland Road, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that the none-stop run of fixtures could see the manager rely heavily on youth.

Stevens made his first senior appearance of the season on Saturday, coming off the bench to play 18 minutes against Fulham at Craven Cottage.

With Boxing Day’s clash versus Preston the first of three games in six days, Whelan says that fans could get to see more of the 19-year-old winger sooner rather than later.

“Once again it’s nice to see the academy players coming through into the first-team,” Whelan told Football Insider.

“We’re going to need them this season because we don’t have a massive squad. For him, with the disappointment of the betting scandal and being taken away from training and the football ground, this will do him the world of good.

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“He is a really good player so hopefully there’s opportunities there for him as well. I’m sure with injuries and this Christmas period, when there’s loads of games coming up, we’ll see more of him.”

Stevens is a versatile midfielder who joined Leeds from Forest Green Rovers back in January 2018, the teenager making just two senior appearances for the Whites to date.

He has had a turbulent start to the 2019/20 season, finding himself banned from all footballing activity for six weeks after breaking gambling rules.

In other Leeds United news, Football Insider can reveal that a north-west side have made a move to sign a player from Elland Road.