Whelan thrilled as senior Leeds figure shares 'massive' Thorp Arch image

The installation of training pitches should be of “massive” importance to Leeds United, according to Noel Whelan.

The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the Whites needed to replicate the Elland Road playing surface at Thorp Arch.

Stefan Jones, the head groundsman at Thorp Arch, took to Twitter on Tuesday to post an image of the work being undertaken at the training ground.

The picture shows the Whites’ training pitches completely dug up.

Leeds also relaid the pitch at Elland Road earlier this year in a temporary move to address worsening conditions.

Whelan insisted the latest development was a necessary move to help Leeds retain a competitive advantage over rivals.

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Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “Our pitch is definitely getting dug up. They’re going to spend a lot of money on getting the surface right at Elland road.

“I think when you think about the style of play that we like to play, it’s imperative that you get the pitches, training pitches, everything that’s going to give you that extra edge over other teams. 

“The surface is a massive part of it, the way we play. We’re on the deck, we’re quick, we’re a very counter-attacking side. It is two or three passes that lead to a goal.

“So we need to have our pitches right, you need to have that surface right. Hence why teams play at the training ground with the same dimensions as the first-team ground.

“You get a feel of it and for progression of players, this is what you need to have now. You know you need to have those standards set high on and off the field.

“That’s exactly what Leeds United are doing. They’re not going to leave any money in the bank not to give everyone that added advantage to play the style of football that’s been so attractive to watch.”

Leeds paid a reported £300,000 to relay the Elland Road pitch back in January.

The Whites finished ninth in their first season back in the Premier League.

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