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Sol Bamba: Leeds United's best defender in the league this season

Taking a closer look at Leeds United's defenders in the Championship this season.

When Leeds united brought in Sol Bamba on loan in January few would have envisaged just how impressive the Ivorian would be with limited time to settle.

Almost immediately the Palermo defender looked a class act at the heart of Neil Redfearn’s side and he is now proving to be the club’s best defender.

Using HITC’s formula to calculate defensive contribution by adding up key attributes, Bamba is a cut above his fellow Leeds centre-backs.

With 34.41 he is almost 10 points clear of both Liam Cooper and Giuseppe Bellusci, with only the resurgent Gaetano Berardi getting close with an impressive 33.9.

  Outfield blocks per gameTackles won per gameEffective clearances per gameEffective headed clearances per gameDuels won per gameAerials won per gameInterceptions won per gameTotalMins Played
Sol Bamba 1 2.5 9.33 5.5 8.08 4 4 34.41 1,080
Giuseppe Bellusci 0.89 1.71 7.68 3.79 5.93 1.93 3.21 25.14 2,406
Liam Cooper 0.74 1.43 7.22 4.26 5.91 3 2.48 25.04 1,843
Scott Wootton 0.57 1.57 3.91 2.7 5.52 2.61 2 18.88 2,070
Gaetano Berardi 0.38 2 3.63 1.88 4.63 1.13 2.25 33.9 1,232
Charlie Taylor 0.38 0.94 2.19 1 5.19 1.56 2.56 13.82 1,337
Sam Byram 0.22 1.5 3.16 1.91 5.69 2.25 1.63 16.36 2,642

Bamba has been so important for Leeds that Redfearn is surely working on a permanent deal for a player whose departure would severely impact the goings on at Elland Road.

While fellow January additions Granddi Ngoyi and Edgar Cani have failed to make much impact, with the former injured and the latter used sparingly, Bamba has more than made up for that.

He is a key player who excels time and again and it is no surprise that he comes out on top in all seven defensive areas highlighted above.

The future looks very bright for Leeds, and it will look even brighter if they can convince Palermo to part with Bamba for good.

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