Why Leeds United should keep hold of Jack Clarke amidst PL interest
According to a report in Daily Mail, Premier League duo Manchester City and Tottenham are keeping close tabs on young Leeds United winger Jack Clarke. The Peacocks have stalled on offering him a new contract, which in turn have put other clubs on alert, especially the ones mentioned above.
Clarke’s current deal still has two-and-a-half years to go, but talks of a long-term deal were in the light. However, that hasn’t started yet and top-flight clubs are seeing him as a fantastic emerging prospect (h/t Daily Mail).
Here’s why Leeds should keep hold of the winger and possibly give him the new contract to make him stay for a long time:
Jack Clarke could be one for the Peacocks’ folklore
Clarke has featured 12 times in the league for Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds so far. Earlier, he was mainly used as an impact substitute, coming on from the bench to make a difference and score/create a goal for the team.
However, with injuries mounting due to games coming thick and fast, the 18-year-old has begun to start games, the first being as early as last week, in his team’s 2-0 win over Derby County. There have been many occasions though, where the 18-year-old has come on at half-time.
All in all, the winger has had a good impact whenever he started/come on as a sub. Now, looking at the challenges/games that lie ahead for Leeds in the coming weeks or months, one cannot help but think that they need every first-team player they have in their squad.
The Peacocks are leading the pack in the Championship, but there are 19 games to go, which depicts that the automatic promotion is still far from secure. Furthermore, with injuries mounting up and the team getting short on options in the wide areas, the club cannot let go of a player of Clarke’s propensities.
To give a clear picture, Ezgjan Alioski, a winger played at left-back against Derby because Barry Douglas was injured. This meant that the two backup wingers, Jack Clarke and Jack Harrison, played in wide positions, with another wide player Pablo Hernandez playing in attacking midfield due to a lack of options there.
This just confirms that Leeds require every player in the squad, be it fringe or not, at some stage of this season to be successful. And Clarke has even done well whenever called upon, which further shows that the Peacocks will miss him if he leaves.
The best solution would be to start the talks of a new contract with the 18-year-old and offer him a long-term deal to ward off interest from the Premier League elites. The youngster should stay at Elland Road and develop into a great player under a great manager.