One of the reasons Leeds United fans remain so excited about the direction their club is going in is the current state of the Whites’ academy.
Leeds are bringing through some incredibly talented youngsters. And they are also investing in prospects who have been catching the eye with other clubs.
Marcelo Bielsa has not been afraid to hand young players a chance. And there are likely to be several members of the club’s academy who are targeting a first-team debut in 2021.
With that in mind, here is TBR’s look at three of the names to look out for over the coming months…
Joe Gelhardt looks to be the most exciting talent in the under-23 ranks right now. He is scoring goals, starring in the number 10 role and forming a superb partnership with one player who may be mentioned later on.
The 18-year-old has played in the Championship with Wigan. And his versatility will certainly appeal to Bielsa.
It looks a safe bet to suggest that he will be a first-team regular at some stage.
Jack Jenkins’s recent promotion to the first-team bench was somewhat overshadowed by Bielsa’s decision to leave out Pablo Hernandez.
Of course, Jenkins is not ready to make the kind of contribution that Hernandez has made at Elland Road. But it would be unfair to completely overlook how well he is developing.
He has been superb in a number of midfield roles. And the upcoming FA Cup tie with Crawley could perhaps represent a perfect time to hand him a debut.
Sam Greenwood tops the under-23 scoring charts following his £3 million move to Elland Road from Arsenal (fee reported by Leeds Live). And what has been so impressive is the variety to the goals that he has scored.
As mentioned, his partnership with Gelhardt is blossoming into something special. But he has also demonstrated how versatile he is in recent times.
His performances as a number eight have been almost as good as his displays up front. And the early signs suggest that the Gunners will rue letting him leave for that fee.