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Transfer Focus: Helder Costa could have two effects on Leeds’ starting XI

According to Football Insider, Leeds United want to bring Helder Costa in on loan this season.

The 25-year-old lit up the Championship during his two seasons in the division with Wolves, but he has struggled to hit those same heights in the Premier League.

A drop back down to the second tier would allow Costa to rediscover his mojo, while Leeds would be getting an incredible player for the upcoming season.

Need wingers

It has previously been reported that the wide areas are the positions that Marcelo Bielsa has prioritised strengthening this summer, and a move for the Wolves man would certainly help towards that.

The Whites have already been linked with a number of players to strengthen the left side such as Brandon Barker and Jack Harrison, but this is the first indication that they want to strengthen the right wing as well.

Costa has largely played on the right wing during his time in England where he can cut in onto his stronger left foot. Although he can operate on the opposite flank as well, one would assume it’s those performances for Wolves which have convinced Leeds he’s worth pursuing.

A different dynamic

With that in mind, Pablo Hernandez’s role in the team could well change after spending most of last season on the right, but perhaps more importantly, the Portuguese target also offers a much different dynamic to what Leeds had in attack last season.

Hernandez possesses fantastic technical abilities, but they were often better utilised from deeper positions. He acted more as a wide playmaker rather than a traditional winger, whereas Costa is at his best when he is utilising his pace and running at full-backs.

Last season Hernandez averaged three key passes per game while Costa averaged just one. Looking at the dribbling stats tells a very similar tale. The 25-year-old averaged 1.9 dribbles per game during his last Championship season, but the 34-year-old completed only 1.1 dribbles per game in 2018/19 – and that was the highest return of any Leeds player to start more than five games, excepting Samuel Saiz.

Clearly then, Costa’s arrival could have two effects. It could see Hernandez take up a more central position, but it could also add a fresh dynamic to the way Leeds get forward, using Costa’s pace and dribbling ability. The really enticing prospect then, is how both of those players could link up.

Article title: Transfer Focus: Helder Costa could have two effects on Leeds’ starting XI

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