Strength And Weakness Of This New Leeds United Signing And Where Will He Fit Into Bielsa’s Plans?

Leeds United have confirmed that they had completed the signing of Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Portuguese winger Helder Costa. The winger has joined initially on a year-long loan deal, but the transfer will be made permanent at the end of the season irrespective of whether the Whites move to the Premier League or not. His contract at Elland Road will run until 2024. The fee remains undisclosed, but the Mirror claims that the Whites are shelling out £15m for this one time Portugal international.

Costa’s signing was on the cards for the past few weeks, and the Whites have now completed their fourth signing in the last few days.

Did Bielsa need him and where does he fit in?

It is no surprise to see the Whites going after wingers in this transfer window. The club had tried to bring in a winger in the January transfer window as well, but the move for Daniel James collapsed at literally the last hour.

Costa is a right winger, and that position was usually occupied by Pablo Hernandez last season who had a terrific campaign at Elland Road. However, quite a few people will agree with us that he can be effective even in the attacking midfield role. The Spaniard is already 34, and he doesn’t really have the pace to run the fullbacks ragged in the wide positions. Hernandez often drifted inside and affected play from the central areas.

Therefore we expect Costa to play in his preferred right wing position and Hernandez can be utilised in a more central role. The 25-year-old is a versatile player though as he can lead the line and even play down the left flank as well.

Strengths

The winger might not have made much impact for Wolves last season in the Premier League, but he was a vital player for them when they got promoted from the Championship. His direct style of play and searing pace troubled the opposition defenders, and Wolves used him well on both the flanks as he contributed with five goals and six assists in the 2017-18 campaign. He also has that flair to his game as he can dribble past opponents with some eye-catching skills.

Costa likes to play as an inverted winger down the right as his preferred foot is left. His work rate is also one of his standout assets, and that is probably why the club spent big money on him. Therefore he should fit in well into Bielsa’s plan of pressing from the top.

Weakness

His composure and link up play is something which the 25-year-old can improve on. Costa’s finishing isn’t also his standout attribute, but he will be an upgrade over what Bielsa had last season. Physically too he can be shrugged off on occasions by a more robust opposition.

Nevertheless, this is a much-needed signing for the Whites, and Costa has the potential to hit the ground running straight away. Bielsa has definitely signed a game changer in the form of this former Benfica player.

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Ayush Chaurasia

Sports Management Graduate. Wannabe sports manager/writer and researcher. If not found disscussing about sports, will be seen talking about movies or tv shows. Miserable rest of the times.

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