Arsenal forward Eddie Nketiah has defined the allure of Elland Road and why he chose to join Leeds United amid a summer of interest, as quoted by the Yorkshire Evening Post.
The highly-rated Gunners prospect is thought to have been targeted by more than 25 sides this summer, with Bristol City one of the more confident outfits having booked a medical for the 20-year-old.
But the Robins were not to be the club he chose to spend the 2019/20 season with, as a late push by Whites Director of Football Victor Orta made a convincing argument why a year in West Yorkshire would pay dividends to his prosperous future in North London.
Nketiah has now disclosed what the Spaniard said that convinced him to join the Whites, and his words offer hope that the deal will payout for United.
“It was flattering to have a lot of interest across Europe,” the England U20 international said.
“I feel like the project here and the manager, it was a big push for me. Wanting to help the team, playing with that pressure and the style of play. They try to go about it the ‘right way’.
“They try to play football and it’s high intensity, which I think is good for my game. The history of the club was a big pull and the fans, it was a good decision in the end, I think.”
Nketiah seeing the football played by Marcelo Bielsa as the game being played in the ‘right way’ offers hope for the Elland Road faithful that his transfer will payout for Leeds, as he should have no issues infusing himself with the boss’ game plans.
A move to join a side that plays under a more defensive-minded head coach could have seen the promising youngster struggle to thrive in the Championship in the manner we hope he will be able to this season; as, with Arsenal, he has already played numerous games in a free-flowing attack alongside high-calibre players, similar to how Bielsa likes his forward options to converge on the box and create a havoc scenario.
The pressure of a promotion chase should not be a daunting prospect for the 5 ft 9 centre-forward, either, as the sought-after attacker – who has drawn comparisons with Ian Wright – added that he feels he will benefit from it, rather than be overwhelmed by it.
“It’s a big club,” he added. “Coming from Arsenal, I’m used to being at a big club, so there’s that bit more expectation and pressure. I think I can thrive off it and, hopefully, I can just continue to work hard and try and help the team as best I can.”