Victor Orta has endured a tumultuous time during his two years at Elland Road, often lambasted for his moves in the transfer market.
However, with the Spaniard taking heed of the Leeds faithful warnings over the summer for his first window frolicking for quality and not quantity, the club have been able to bring in top level calibre players to support an already talented squad.
One continued concern by fans had been Orta’s insistence on signing young foreign talent to boost the academy system that has already bared fruit for years before his arrival.
Although the concern had been that this could dilute the current crop of talent in the youth ranks, this had not been apparent with the emergence of young stars like Josh Clarke and Ryan Edmondson to name but a few.
The recent goalkeeping crisis at Leeds of both Blackman and BPF gave youngster Will Huffer his first start for his boyhood club and a good performance cane with it.
However, it’s the debut for Aapo Halme that has given many a fan a boost of confidence in the Spaniard, with Halme being a personal purchase for the Head of Football.
Halme came in last January in time Leeds were not only struggling for form, but who’s squad frailties extended to nearly every position and Leeds had continued their youth recruitment instead of bringing in reinforcements until late in the window, a move many fans were not keen on.
Halme had been joined by Pascal Strujk and Oliver Sarkic during the window, with all three being placed in the development squad.
The 20-year old centre back was finally given his chance to repay Orta’s faith having both suffered with injuries and starred for the under 23’s and by all accounts performed like he’d been in the setup since July with Bielsa.
Halme will have gifted Leeds fans hope that the squad is not as threadbare as we are to believe in defence.
With Ayling and Berardi both out for a prolonged spell and Jameson suffering with a minute injury, Leeds now have another option ready to take the reigns at centre back.
Can Halme be the young star to cement a place in the first team? It’s too soon to say, but its bloody good to see another hotshot taking on the first team players for a starting spot.
By Ryan Ingham