Leeds United boss reveals positive new striker feedback as club admit further additions needed

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Jesse Marsch has given his verdict on Leeds United’s latest addition: 18-year-old attacker Sonny Perkins

Leeds United announced their seventh summer signing this week as Sonny Perkins put pen to paper on a three-year deal at Elland Road.

The 18-year-old former West Ham United teen and England youth international agreed terms with the Whites after turning down the offer of a first professional deal with the Hammers.

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Perkins made senior appearances for David Moyes’ side last season but has opted for a new challenge, no doubt encouraged by the pathway afforded to the likes of Joe Gelhardt and Sam Greenwood since signing two summers ago.

Head coach Jesse Marsch revealed Perkins had been training with Leeds following the expiry of his West Ham contract and has so far received ‘good feedback’ on the player.

"He's been at Thorp Arch training with our 21s and we've had really good feedback so far. So, I'm looking forward to getting back and getting to know him more and getting to work with him more on a daily basis,” Marsch said whilst away on pre-season tour of Australia.

Asked what he knew of the youngster, Marsch replied: “He's got qualities and [is an] explosive striker. I think he has flexibility in the positions he can play. He's an intelligent player. We're really excited to add him to our to our club.”

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Perkins’ addition means Leeds are now spoilt for choice when it comes to attacking options for their Under-21 side.

Jesse Marsch grins during Leeds United's pre-season tour of Australia (Photo by Albert Perez/Getty Images)Jesse Marsch grins during Leeds United's pre-season tour of Australia (Photo by Albert Perez/Getty Images)
Jesse Marsch grins during Leeds United's pre-season tour of Australia (Photo by Albert Perez/Getty Images)

Mateo Joseph – signed from Espanyol in January – along with Max Dean, will compete against Perkins for the centre-forward role in the youngsters’ starting XI this season.

Perkins netted ten times in Premier League 2 Division 1 last campaign, but this year will feature in the division below with Leeds.

It is hoped the club can make an immediate bounce-back to the top flight of Under-21 football after succumbing to relegation last term.

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Whether Leeds and West Ham will go to a tribunal over Perkins’ transfer fee is still unclear, however the London club will be owed compensation regardless of whether an agreement is struck between the two sides.

At senior level, Marsch also confirmed Leeds were ‘actively pursuing’ moves for a striker and a left-back: “I think it's been well documented that [Charles] De Ketalaere was a goal of ours and and it's not finished yet with him. But we've also moved on to some other targets, trying to figure out which would be the best fit.”

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