Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Leeds United Ready To Sign 26 Y/O Free Agent: Perfect First Signing By Bielsa?

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Bishwaraj Bhattacharyya
Former athlete. Now a journalist hoping to cover football no matter the league or country.

Marco Bielsa has taken over the reigns at Elland Road and is already lining up a move for the former Athletico Bilbao left-back, Jon Aurtenetxe. Leeds United have an open shot at the 26-year-old now that he is a free agent and due to Bielsa’s previous relations with the player.

Aurtenetxe enjoyed his best footballing days under the Argentine boss and was even instrumental in the club’s Europa League final run in 2012. Over the years he fell down the pecking order and had to find refuge in loan spells away to Celta Vigo and CD Tenerife.

The defender is coming off a season with Scottish Premiership outfit, Dundee FC, having made 19 appearances and registered a single assist this past season. Aurtenetxe is versatile with his positioning and has a striking left foot to go along with it.

He can slide inside towards more central defensive positions if required and also can feature from a more offensive role on the left. The 26-year-old has been capped 18 times for the Spain youth sides but later chose to switch his allegiance to Basque Count in 2011.

Aurtenetxe used his talents to good measure in the La Liga and racked up over 100 appearances with Bilbao. He did well during his loan spells as well, receiving contracts from Club Deportivo Mirandes and Amorebieta, prior to his move to Scotland.

He will certainly be answering one of Leeds’ most obvious questions from the previous season. The Whites pulled the trigger on a Laurens De Bock transfer which ended up disappointing the fans plenty of times. The former Club Brugge man still needs a fair bit of time to adjust to life in the Championship.

Aurtenetxe might not have played prime quality football in the recent years but certainly has the ability to shine in the Peacock ranks. He is still only 26 and has all of his athletic abilities tucked under his boots.

Bielsa could also use acquainted figures in the club ranks to better implement his style of play. The Argentine head coach boasts of a very impressive career in management and has been tasked at returning Leeds to promotion-chasing ways.

After last season’s nightmare under Thomas Christiansen and Paul Heckingbottom, Andrea Radrizzani expects his latest decision to pay off in the coming season. Bielsa could pull off the spectacle during his 2-3 year-stay at Elland Road but will require a certain bit of financial backing.

Read More: Leeds United Get Odds Slashed To Win The Championship: Can Bielsa Spin His Wizardry At Elland Road?

Adding Aurtenetxe to the squad is the ideal way to start off his career at West Yorkshire.

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