Whelan: The 'next Stuart Dallas' could start for Leeds today after Bielsa update
Noel Whelan has suggested Jamie Shackleton is piling the pressure on senior stars at Leeds United and could be promoted to the starting XI.
The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the 21-year-old is “desperate” to get a chance for the opener against Man United today.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference (August 12th), Bielsa revealed Shackleton had “increased his hierarchy” within the first-team squad over the past year.
He also heralded the youngster’s ability to play either as a full-back or a central midfielder.
Whelan suggested Shackleton could be considered a “younger Stuart Dallas” after the Northern Irishman’s impressive displays all across the pitch.
He insisted the homegrown starlet is “breathing down the necks” of the senior stars.
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“The one thing about Jamie will all love is the fact that he’s not scared to try different positions,” Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.
“Very much like the next Stuart Dallas, a younger Dallas, should we say. He can fit into different positions, different roles, he doesn’t let you down.
“He’s very committed, his desire is so infectious. When you see him play, he comes on and he runs his heart out. But he also adds quality with that and the senior players know that.
“He’s breathing down their necks, he’s desperate to get a place there. It’s so good to have eager, enthusiastic, quality young players that are pushing.
“They are not afraid to push these elder statesmen and more senior players for their place. That keeps them on their toes.
“They’ve got to produce, they’ve got to play week in week out at a level that keeps him at bay. He’s like a caged up tiger.”
Shackleton made three starts in 13 league appearances last season.