Leeds United’s Marc Roca has told El País that time spent away from Spain has helped him develop both on and off the field.

The midfielder left Espanyol for Bayern Munich in 2020 and after spending two years with them, he joined the Whites on a permanent deal. He made 36 appearances at Leeds last season and then joined Real Betis on a loan deal in the summer window.

The 27-year-old has scored four goals and registered two assists from 21 games for the La Liga side.

The Leeds owned player is currently enjoying life at the Andalusian club and has credited that to the progress he made during his time at both Bayern and Elland Road.

“I left Espanyol as a child and I’ve returned to Spain as a man. I’m a much more complete footballer. I’ve changed both mentally and physically. My football is better,” he said.

“I’m no longer just a means of good ball handling. I have won defensively in duels, tactically, something that is very important for a central midfielder, and I am deployed in attack.

“I went to Bayern weighing 74 kilos and now I weigh 81. There are many kilos that I have gained in muscle mass. Many people say that if you are stronger, you will also be slower and less agile. In my case that hasn’t happened. I feel stronger, more agile and more dynamic.”

The Leeds man hasn’t made his debut for Spain just yet and if he were to continue to shine for Manuel Pellegrini’s side, he could receive a callup from Luis de la Fuente for the Euros next summer.

Roca has said he’s grateful to De La Fuente for following him but insisted that his immediate focus is on Real Betis.