'He ticks every box' - Whelan: I'm expecting big things from Leeds player underused by Bielsa


Leeds United youngster Jamie Shackleton was not used enough by manager Marcelo Bielsa during their unsuccessful Championship promotion push, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Elland Road star exclusively told Football Insider that the 19-year-old, who was handed his first ever England under-20s cap in the Toulon Tournament following the end of the domestic season, has seriously impressed him with his performances and that he is well deserving of his Three Lions call up.

Having come through the academy as a central midfielder, Marcelo Bielsa found a place for the teenager on the right side of defence, helping cover Luke Ayling in case of injury or suspension.

However, Whelan insists that he should have been playing more, raving over the qualities that he brings to the side.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider Whelan said: “It’s always a proud moment for anyone to be capped by England. I’m really, really pleased for Jamie, he really deserves it.

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

“He’s been a great player last season. Didn’t get used enough really in my eyes. The quality that he brings, the energy, the tenacity, the way he can run with the ball, drive at defenders but also enjoy the horrible side of the game – he ticks every box for me.

“I’m not surprised he’s been capped by England at that level. With Bielsa there, he’ll make him an even better player.”

Of Shackleton’s 24 Leeds appearances to date, 21 of them have come in the Championship, just four of those seeing him named in the starting XI.

His debut came as a substitute in the club’s second league game of the season back in August 2018, playing just under 20 minutes in a 4-1 win against Derby County.

In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED there are three major clubs chasing the capture of an Elland Road mainstay never dropped by Bielsa.