Alan Smith celebrates with fellow academy graduates Harry Kewell and Jonathan Woodgate after scoring on his Leeds United debut. Pic: Gary Longbottom.

21 of the most memorable Leeds United academy breakthroughs

The Leeds United academy has raised some of outstanding football players throughout the years.

Thursday, 28th October 2021, 1:16 pm

Cody Drameh became the latest academy player to be handed his senior bow when he started against Arsenal in the Whites’ Carabao Cup tie.

Though he couldn’t stop Leeds exiting the competition, the 19-year-old acquitted himself very well and - alongside Joe Gelhardt, Sam Greenwood and Crysencio Summerville, who joined him on the pitch for the second half - was a fantastic advertisement for the excellent recruitment and development going on at Thorp Arch.

But a strong Leeds United academy is not a 2021 phenomenon. For years, the Whites have handed senior debuts to players who have gone on to do extraordinary things - and some have impressed from their very first game.

Here are 21 great players who played senior football for the first time at Leeds.

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