Ross County midfielder Jordan Tillson has praised Leo Hjelde after Leeds United interest was confirmed in the Norwegian defender this week.

The 17-year-old centre-back – who can also play left-back – has been hailed as ‘the next Virgil Van Dijk’ by manager John Hughes, who also stated that Leeds United wanted to sign Hjelde prior to his loan move from Celtic to Dingwall in January.

The Ross County youngster has been linked with Leeds United.

The Ross County youngster has been linked with Leeds United. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Hughes has opted for senior pros recently as County fight for Scottish Premiership survival but Tillson has been impressed by his teammate who is attracting Leeds United interest: “Leo has done well.

“He is only young though and he has a lot to learn. He is doing great and hopefully he can keep playing well for us between now and the end of the season. The squad is so good and the experienced lads have been great with the younger ones.”

County currently sit 10th in the Premiership ahead of four huge matches to end the season. Without a game this week, Tillson says time is being used for preparation for the vital fixture run-in.

Hamilton Academical v Ross County - Scottish Premiership

Preparation underway.
(Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

He said: “It has been a bit frustrating for us not to have a game this week. But we will be raring to go against St Mirren next Wednesday. We have a bit of a break to rectify wee things and we’ll work this week to stop these things happening.

“We will look at each game individually as we have to focus on ourselves. We are going to need real steel and hard graft. It’s going to be a fight and we are going to have to work harder than other teams.”

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