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Leeds United close in on Johnson

Leeds United hope to follow up the signing of Neil Kilkenny by finalising Bradley Johnson's switch from Northampton early next week.

United completed their second capture of the transfer window yesterday by securing Kilkenny on loan from Birmingham City with a view to a permanent deal, and Northampton winger Johnson looks set to follow the Australian international into Elland Road in the coming days.

Leeds have agreed a fee for Johnson – believed to be in the region of 250,000 – and the 20-year-old left winger travelled to United's Thorp Arch training complex for contract talks yesterday evening.

The two parties are believed to be in agreement over Johnson's wages and are on the verge of ratifying a long-term deal. Johnson is expected to undergo a medical and sign his contract on Monday or Tuesday.

United's discussions with Johnson came less than 24 hours before Northampton were due to line up against Leeds at Elland Road this afternoon. Northampton ruled Johnson out of the League One fixture after accepting United's bid for the winger.

Leeds boss Dennis Wise began his transfer dealings on Wednesday by signing young Finnish winger Sebastian Sorsa on a free transfer from HJK Helsinki, but confirmation of Kilkenny's arrival yesterday added a more experienced campaigner to United's midfield ranks.

Kilkenny has played in the Premiership with Birmingham and completed two loan spells at Oldham Athletic, the most recent of which ended after the Latics' 3-1 victory at Elland Road on Tuesday.

The 22-year-old cut an influential figure in the centre of Oldham's midfield as United were swept aside on New Year's Day and, having accepted an emergency loan deal yesterday in order to ensure his availability for this afternoon's clash with Northampton, Kilkenny will fulfil the formality of putting pen to paper on a permanent contract next week.

The arrival of Johnson, meanwhile, would leave a question mark over United's interest in Dean Morgan who is set to depart financially-stricken Luton Town before the end of the month.

Leeds are one of three League One clubs who were keen on signing Morgan but sources at Elland Road were not expecting a deal to be struck before the close of business yesterday, and Johnson's arrival looks set to provide Wise with the left-sided midfielder he requires.

 
 
 

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