By Noel Whelan

18th Apr, 2019 | 4:00pm

'Horrible side' - Exclusive: Whelan reveals what's changed about transformed Leeds player


Pablo Hernandez is playing the best football of his career after adding a new “horrible side” to his game at Leeds United this season, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Elland Road striker told Football Insider how the former Spain international has gone to a new level despite turning 34 earlier this month.

Hernandez has spearheaded Leeds’ automatic promotion challenging, scoring 12 goals and providing a further 12 assists from 35 league matches.

Whelan said: “He’s done everything this season, he really has, at the age of 32, his passion and drive for a game of football – he’s really enjoying his football, he’s the fittest I’ve seen him and not only is he doing the creative side you’d expect from a player like Pablo Hernandez but he’s doing the horrible side as well, which I’ve not seen much of since his time at Leeds. He’s tried but it wasn’t really in his make-up.

“This season he’s challenging back, he’s putting tackles in, running into his own goalmouth to protect a lead. It’s just incredible and I talked to someone not long ago about if you want to look at one player, how you go about a game of football and how you lead a team and take control of a game, he is that man.

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

“He can do things that no person can do at Leeds United, he’s always one step ahead and always has been but this season we’ve seen a rejuvenated, just a player that has absolutely everything, ticking every single box for Leeds and keeping him fit is absolutely massive until the end of the season.”

The Spanish attacking midfielder is set to be pulling the strings for Leeds once again when they return to league action in tomorrow’s (Friday) Championship home clash against Wigan Athletic at Elland Road.

Marcelo Bielsa revealed at his media conference yesterday that he is set to field the same starting XI that defeated Sheffield Wednesday last weekend.

In other Leeds United news, the club are closing in on a JAWDROPPING £177million windfall after developments this week.