Leeds United have played 37 league games this season, Marcelo Bielsa has picked Stuart Dallas in his starting line-up 37 times. That says a lot.
Northern Ireland international Dallas has played as a right-back, a left-back, and a central midfielder this season (as well as a couple of short cameos in other positions) and his versatility and level of performance have been very impressive all season.
which was how I saw it too. Dallas my pick for POTY. Exceptional impact and immense versatility, as detailed in this piece:https://t.co/GulFhOAlv5— Phil Hay (@PhilHay_) April 29, 2020
Dallas has chipped in with three goals this season. His two goals in back-to-back games in the Home 1-1 draw with Preston North End, and in the ridiculous 5-4 win away at Birmingham City, gained Leeds some vital points in the period when Leeds were not playing particularly well.
There has not been much room to criticise Dallas this season, but if there was to be something it would be that some of his central midfield performances were noticeably below the level of some of his more established teammates in that position.
However, he has established himself as the best left-back in the Leeds squad, despite having an established left-back in Barry Douglas - and Ezgjan Alioski as options (as well as Leif Davis, but he has been injured). Early in the season when Luke Ayling was injured, Dallas’ performances at right-back were so good that there was a genuine argument for not bringing Ayling back into the starting line-up.
Stoke City (A) - He’s had several really good performances this season that could have been chosen. I really rated this performance. Early on he faced the tough challenge of James McClean running at him, and he dealt with it excellently. He showed that he was good enough defensively to play in the right-back role, which this early in the season was still questioned. He was excellent in all facets of the game throughout, and scored a well-taken goal from an excellent Pablo Hernandez pass after a great team move. Luke Ayling’s goal against Huddersfield Town is my Goal of the Season, but this goal and Tyler Roberts’ first away at Hull City round out my top three. He also captained the side once Hernandez was substituted.
Leeds United turn on the style...— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) August 25, 2019
Stuart Dallas scored this well-worked goal as piled the misery onto Stoke City with a 3-0 win.
Watch full highlights on the Sky Sports app or here: https://t.co/RLNwD7BITq pic.twitter.com/uokSPWKXsG
Queens Park Rangers (A) - Another who could have been given Nottingham Forest away as the whole team was poor. In the end his performance at left-back against QPR is his worst performance. The first half he was run ragged by Bright Osayi-Samuel and looked like he had no idea how to defend. He also ended up with a pass completion under 50% - with Leeds’ style of play that is a huge problem. Hauled off at half-time.
SEASON (so far) RATINGS
I gave Ben White and Luke Ayling 8.5/10 for their season ratings and I would say that Dallas has had a better season than both of them. Not only playing well but doing so in multiple positions, often switching multiple times during a game, has been great to watch and is why Marcelo Bielsa trusts him so much.
Truly an excellent season: 9/10