Bayer Leverkusen's Leon Bailey is quietly building up a head of steam, thanks to Peter Bosz. - © 2018 DFL
Bayer Leverkusen's Leon Bailey is quietly building up a head of steam, thanks to Peter Bosz. - © 2018 DFL

Bayer Leverkusen's Leon Bailey: "My best position is on the right"

Jamaican winger Leon Bailey says he is enjoying his football again as he looks to rediscover his best form under new Bayer Leverkusen coach Peter Bosz.

Bailey acquired global recognition with a series of dazzling displays in 2017/18, but played only sporadically in the first half of the current campaign prior to Heiko Herrlich's dismissal in December.

The 21-year-old has been given a new lease of life under former Ajax and Borussia Dortmund coach Bosz, however, scoring three goals in two friendly appearances during the winter break, from his favoured position on the right wing.

"I've always said my best position is on the right-hand side," said Bailey, who was deployed on the left in all but six of his 16 Bundesliga appearances under Herrlich earlier in the campaign. "I feel really happy out on the right. And when a player feels happy, he can make a lot happen."

Bailey also believes Bosz's attack-minded approach will only help bring the best out of him.

"I know all about his playing style from when he was in charge of Ajax," he said. "I like this style of play. It's a more attacking game. I really like this style of football."

Watch: All Leon Bailey's Bundesliga goals and assists in 2017/18

Bosz: 'I know what Leon's capable of'

A happy Bailey can only be good news for Leverkusen. He scored nine goals and registered six assists in 35 Bundesliga appearances (25 starts) last season as Die Werkself went within a point of qualifying for the UEFA Champions League. At the halfway stage of 2018/19, he has managed just one goal and two assists in 16 outings (eight starts) for a Bayer side seven points adrift of the top four.

Happily, Bosz is already seeing the green shoots of recovery.

"Leon's fit, that's important," the 55-year-old said. "He didn't play in every game during the first half of the season. "Playing in the two friendlies will have done his confidence the power of good. The goals will have helped, too. I know what he's capable of."

Leverkusen resume their Bundesliga campaign at home to high-flying local rivals Borussia Mönchengladbach on 19 January.

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