Young Leeds talent snubbed Prem giants to commit future to Whites

Date published: Wednesday 17th October 2018 11:32

LEEDS, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 06: Pontus Jansson of Leeds United celebrates with Jack Clarke (l) and Tyler Roberts (r) scoring the equalising goal to make the score 1-1 during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Brentford at Elland Road on October 6, 2018 in Leeds, England. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

Leeds’ latest young talent, Jack Clarke, snubbed interest from Premier League champions Manchester City to sign his first professional deal with United, it has been revealed.

The 17-year-old signed his first pro deal last November, having snubbed a move to the Etihad in favour of what looks a simpler route to first-team football at Elland Road.

Clarke made his senior debut for the Whites in their controversial draw with Brentford before the international break – a match which saw Pontus Jansson criticise the referee and subsequently be hit by an FA charge.

The youngster made an immediate impact, drawing a foul from Moses Odubajo which arguably should’ve resulted in a second yellow card for the full-back.

Kalvin Phillips and Bailey Peacock-Farrell graduated the academy recently and, after snubbing interest from Manchester City to sign his pro contract, Clarke will be hoping to follow suit.

Speaking to the Daily Mirror, Clarke spoke of his continued commitment to United, saying: “I wouldn’t want to leave when I’ve got everything I want here.”

One of Leeds’ biggest setbacks in their 14-year Premier League exile has been the continued loss of young talent – Lewis Cook being the most notable – with the now-Bournemouth man since establishing himself as an England international.

Carlos Corberan, Leeds United’s U23 boss, has seen Clarke’s talent grow and believe’s it’s only a matter of time before the forward is a first-team regular.

“Jack Clarke is a young player with huge talent,” Corberan said. “When I arrived at Leeds, he was with the Under-18 side. We saw that he had the level to play with the Under-23s, and we moved him up.”


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