Kyle Bartley has had a fantastic season at Elland Road, missing only one game in the entire Sky Bet Championship campaign through suspension.
There was concern in some quarters over his signing, Leeds united fans not overly enamoured by his lack of game time since arriving at Swansea in 2012. Since signing for the Swans his time has been limited to just 26 appearances, another 19 appearances (five goals) coming in a half-season loan spell with Birmingham City from July 2013 to January 2014.
But the Manchester-born former Arsenal youth player has overcome that sense of inaction and put together not only a solid run of games, but with a solid set of performances to match – performances that brought six goals and many plaudits for Leeds’ rock at the back.
For his part, Bartley is more than happy and honoured to have represented what he terms a “great club,” his admiration for the Whites shining through the words that he carefully chooses to express what he wants to say. On representing Leeds, he says: “It’s been fantastic, the fans, the staff, the manager everyone has been really brilliant for me,” before going on to say that his time at Elland Road has been instrumental in seeing him grow up as both a player and a person.
Bartley’s respect for Garry Monk shines through in everything that he has to say about his former boss at Swansea, who has been his temporary boss at Elland Road. Admitting his candid nature, saying that maybe he was “a little too honest,” that it is time for the owners of the club, Massimo Cellino and Andrea Radrizzani, to “step up and to make sure that the manager stays.”
However, perhaps the most shocking point that he made in the near five-minute interview was his end comment regarding his direct feelings on the position of Garry Monk at Leeds United. In a direct call to the owners of the club, Bartley said it was time for Cellino and Radrizzani to get around the negotiating table and sort out the direction the club needs to take – placing Monk at the very centre of those concerns.
Speaking quite abruptly on the situation the on-loan Swansea man stated: “He’s [Monk’s] been fantastic and if the owners can’t see that, and if the owners can’t get him tied down, then it probably wouldn’t be a place where I wanted to be because they need to have a vision and the manager is that vision in my eyes.”