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Tom Elliott is pushing for play-offs with Millwall four years after Leeds United release

The striker was released in January 2011 after failing to establish himself at Leeds United.

Mathew Nash

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Leeds United have seen their play-off push dramatically fall away in the second half of the season. Not even a change of manager has helped them, with Paul Heckingbottom unable to turn around their recent misfortunes. But whilst Leeds have seen their play-off challenge disappear another side have shot up the table and into contention. Millwall have been in fine form in 2018. Neil Harris’ side are now just two points off the top-six and have some of the best form in the league.

For one Millwall player, it will certainly be a sweet feeling. Tom Elliott is a part of the Millwall side that is currently on the promotion charge. Of course, Leeds fans will remember he is a former youth-team product at the club.

KINGSTON UPON THAMES, ENGLAND – JANUARY 17: Tom Elliott of AFC Wimbledon (C) celebrates scoring his sides first goal during the Emirates FA Cup third round replay between AFC Wimbledon and Sutton United at The Cherry Red Records Stadium on January 17, 2017 in Kingston upon Thames, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

The 27-year-old is from Leeds and was with the club from 2006 until 2011. He played just four times for Leeds and spent time on loan with Macclesfield Town, Bury and Rotherham United before being released in January 2011.

After that Elliot repaired his career during spells at Hamilton Academical, Stockport County, Cambridge United and AFC Wimbledon – before being signed by Millwall in the summer.

He has since become a key member of the Millwall squad. Whilst not a regular starter, he often comes on from the bench and has scored five goals for the club this season. One of those goals actually came against Leeds. Elliott scored the equalising goal before Millwall secured a stunning 4-3 win at Elland Road back in January.

LONDON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 30: Tom Huddlestone of Derby County is challenged by Tom Elliott of Millwall during the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Derby County at The Den on January 30, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)

For many, the link between Elliott and Leeds would not have been immediate, considering the minimal impact he had at Leeds.

But given the striking woes that Leeds have had this season, the Whites could have done with a player of Elliott’s qualities in their first-team squad this season.

When Leeds released the striker he was not prolific and prone to hamstring injuries, so they are not wrong to have let him go. But it is certainly a shame for Leeds to see one of their own helping Millwall to a play-off push, whilst Leeds flounder with a lack of decent striking options.

Monaco

“First of many” – Some Nottingham Forest fans react to Gil Dias’ wonder goal

The Portuguese youngster has signed for Forest on a season-long loan.

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Dias
Photo: Getty Images

Nottingham Forest boss Aitor Karanka has been extremely busy reshaping his squad during this summer and a series of high profile signings have given the Reds’ long-suffering supporters optimism ahead of the forthcoming campaign.

The Championship outfit have signed no fewer than nine players so far during the off season and it seems likely that Karanka will add more signings to his squad of players before the big August kick-off.

One man who has joined the Reds this summer is Gil Dias who has signed on a season-long loan from French giants Monaco and the 21-year-old has arrived with a big reputation and a glowing reference from agent Jorge Mendes.

(Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images)

Dias is one of several new signings who has been hoping to impress his new boss during a pre-season tour of Marbella and his wonder strike in a 3-0 win over Malaga this morning has firmly excited the Forest faithful.

After picking the ball up close to the half-way line, Dias danced past several defenders before calmly finishing under the advancing goalkeeper to give the Reds a 1-0 lead.

Given the nature of his first goal for the club some Forest fans were absolutely buzzing on Twitter, whilst Dias himself spoke of his delight at notching for the first time in the famous red.

Here we looked at some of the best tweets in reaction to Dias’ sensational goal…

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Manchester City

Oleksandr Zinchenko will thrive if given first-team football at Wolves next season

Wolves are reportedly interested in bringing the talented youngster to Molineux.

Liam Thomas

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Oleksandr Zinchenko
Photo: Getty Images

Manchester City‘s talented youngster Oleksandr Zinchenko looks set to leave the Premier League champions this summer in search of first team football.

According to the Telegraph, Wolves boss Nuno Espírito Santo is keen on bringing the wing back into his exciting setup, for a reported fee of £16 million.

Zinchenko started only six times for Pep Guardiola’s record breaking side last season and showed glimpses of what he could achieve if given a sufficient amount of game time.

(Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Wolves seem the perfect destination for Zinchenko at this stage in his career and the ambitious west Midlands club are showing no signs of fear going into the new Premier League season.

At 21 years of age, Zinchenko has already featured 16 times for his country; Ukraine and filled in for the absent Benjamin Mendy last season for City and proved he was more than capable of mixing it with the leagues best when needed.

The chance to play under the enigmatic Nuno Espírito Santo certainly puts Zinchenko in an environment to thrive, and the Ukrainian international will in no doubt take with him to Molineux what Pep Guardiola has taught him during his time at the Citizens.

“He is a talented player, so clear, so clean. The way he plays, his decisions are always perfect. As a young player, I hope in the future he will help us.”

– Manchester City boss, Pep Guardiola, speaking about Oleksandr Zinchenko last season.

Given the opportunity to play week in, week out will only improve Zinchenko’s already undeniable talent, and his versatility to play anywhere in the midfield would be a real weapon for Wolves to have at their disposal.

Zinchenko is undoubtedly a coaches dream, with a high footballing IQ and never ending relentless energy he could become a valuable member of Wolves’ set up for the 2018/19 Premier League season.

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Leeds United

Leeds’ loan signing of Jamal Blackman adds much-needed goalkeeping depth

Max Cohen

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Jamal Blackman
Photo: Getty Images

On Monday, Leeds United announced the loan signing of goalkeeper Jamal Blackman from Chelsea.

The 24-year-old Englishman represents an astute signing on Marcelo Bielsa’s part, adding much-needed depth and Championship experience to the squad.

This summer, the Yorkshire club have seen nine players depart Elland Road, including goalkeepers Felix Wiedwald and Andy Lonergan.

As a result of this large turnover, the Whites have been left extremely short-staffed between the sticks, with only 21-year-old Bailey Peacock-Farrell in the mix with meaningful first-team experience.

Blackman is a smart addition to the squad as it is clear more goalkeeping options are needed, and it would be naive to allow Peacock-Farrell to occupy the undisputed number one spot when he only has 12 Championship appearances to his name.

Although the youngster’s performances during the final months of last season showed his impressive potential, Peacock-Farrell nevertheless conceded 18 goals and kept just a solitary clean sheet in 11 matches.

(Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

In future seasons, the 21-year-old will be trusted with the starting spot but, for now, Jamal Blackman is a more effective option and can teach Peacock-Farrell about goalkeeping in the Championship.

Blackman made 31 appearances for Sheffield United last season, steering the Blades to an impressive tenth-placed finish, nine points above Leeds. The goalkeeper kept nine clean sheets and only conceded 34 goals, a laudable feat.

In addition, Chelsea experts think highly of the goalkeeper, as the club has continued to hold to his services permanently after numerous loan spells – perhaps indicating they hold out hope he can perform for the Blues at a top level one day.

Speaking to Leeds Live, football.london Chelsea writer Oliver Harbord praised Blackman’s saving abilities.

“He comes with the reputation of being a top shotstopper with some excellent reactions.”

In all, the season-long loan signing of Jamal Blackman is a smart piece of business from Leeds, bolstering their threadbare goalkeeping options with a highly-rated young shot-stopper.

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