Good Morning. It's Friday 23rd April, and here are the latest headlines from Elland Road...
Toney for Leeds
Having drawn six out of their last seven games Brentford have slipped from automatic promotion prospects to play off hopeful's. One player who does stand out in their squad is striker Ivan Toney. The former Posh front man completed his move to West London last Summer for just 5m, replacing Ollie Watkins. This term, the 29yo has netted 29 times for the Bees, and recorded 10 assists!
Assuming Brentford don't go up, should Leeds try and prize away their star asset? Should Leeds have tried to sign Ollie Watkins last Summer?
Leeds looking to bolster their U23's
Having recently secured promotion to the U23's Premier League 1, Mark Jackson Marcelo Bielsa and Victor Orta are looking to secure a number of new signings, to compete next season with the likes of Chelsea, Manchester City / Utd and Arsenal. The young Whites secured automatic promotion after beating Aston Villa last week, sending them twelve points clear of second place Stoke City with three games left.
Nottingham Forest youngster Brennan Johnson is currently on loan with Lincoln City (the same same Robbie Gotts failed to make an impact at). His 10 goals and 12 assists mean his side are currently fourth in League One and five points off the top two. Forest will be seeking a fee of around 10m for the 19yo.
Leeds have also identified Brighton centre back Haydon Roberts. The 18yo has been on Leeds radar for a while. Roberts has impressed this term whilst on loan at Rochdale, making 26 appearances in League One so far, playing at centre-back, left-back and holding-midfield. Unfortunately for the Whites, Brighton don't seem to want to do business with Leeds!
Josh Doig (no relation to 80's player Russell) joined Hibs 14 months ago after being released by Hearts. In his debut season, the 18yo left back has been in electric form, catching the interest of the big guns in the Premiership, including Leeds. Strangely, he is only valued at 1.5m. He is under contract at Easter Road until 2025.
Why is it that the current crop of Leeds youngsters who have been sent out on loan this season have not lived up to expectation?
Alan Smith draws comparisons between bitter rivals
Former Leeds and Manchester Utd forward Alan Smith has drawn comparisons between the bitter enemies ahead of their Sunday showdown. Smith signed up for the Whites as an apprentice when he was sixteen, and made his first team debut two years today. Unfortunately in 2004 when Leeds were relegated from the top flight. They needed to offload their prized assets due to crippling debts, and unfortunately 7m was too good to turn away, even if it was to their bitter rivals over the Pennines! To give him his dues, he donated his 1m fee back to Leeds. How many players have you ever seen do that?
Speaking ahead of the game, Smith said...
You know the passion that both clubs have got and that’s why I loved playing for both clubs. Just because they are very, very similar. Leeds fans don’t like me for saying it, but the characteristics of both clubs are very, very similar in terms of the beliefs, the history of the clubs, the people who are involved in it, the styles. The passion of the fans is very, very similar. I think that’s why it made my transition quite easy in that first year. And you’re surrounded by world-class players, which makes it a little bit easier as well.