Luis Enrique has showered praise on Leeds United striker Tyler Roberts ahead of Spain’s clash against Wales on Thursday night.
The Spain national team boss has earmarked the Leeds United striker as the one to watch out for in the absence of Gareth Bale, who was ruled out of the friendly match with a groin problem.
“It seems a sensible move due to the injuries he (Bale) has had, but it is a positive for Spain,” Enrique said, as quoted by Wales Online.
“We have analysed Wales with Bale in the team, and he has great speed, but it does not change anything for us.
“They have good, young players, like Tyler Roberts, and we know it will not be easy.”
Roberts, who made his international debut as a replacement for Bale during last month’s 4-1 win over Ireland in Cardiff, has been a player reborn under Marcelo Bielsa this season.
The 19-year-old struggled with injuries when he first arrived at Leeds. The injuries to Kemar Roofe and Patrick Bamford opened up the opportunity for him to impress the Argentine.
He came under criticism after a lacklustre performance against Millwall. However, Bielsa kept faith in him and encouraged him to play his natural game.
Roberts repaid the faith with a brace in Leeds’ 3-0 win against Preston and scored the winner against Hull City earlier this month.
Getting such high praise from a renowned manager is a huge moral boost for the youngster. Playing under Bielsa is definitely getting players noticed, and Roberts will be motivated to put on a strong performance for his country.
He is still not the finished product yet, but he has a bright future ahead if he keeps improving at Leeds.