MOTHERWELL boss Ian Baraclough has paid tribute to outgoing striker Lee Erwin - and says he has a ‘big opportunity’ to shine at Leeds United.
Erwin completed his move to Leeds on a three-year deal yesterday afternoon, with the 21-year-old coming to the end of his contract at Fir Park, which runs out on June 30.
Motherwell will receive a development fee for Erwin, which is yet to be agreed, but likely to be a six-figure payment.
The SPL outfit had tabled new terms to Erwin and were keen for him to remain at Fir Park, where he ended last season in impressive fashion with five goals in Well’s last nine games to steer them to safety.
But Erwin elected to head south, to the disappointment of boss Baraclough.
He said: “We are obviously disappointed to lose a player like Lee and I told the lad himself I think he would’ve benefited from a further year playing week to week in our first-team.
“However, with that all being said, I understand how football works and Leeds United is a great club with a great tradition and it’s a big opportunity for him.
“We’re very proud of him and what he’s achieved.
“From our point of view, it’s a feather in the cap for our Elite Academy; from Chris McCart, Gordon Young and Scott Leitch as well as the individual coaches and the scouts who worked with Lee from such a young age.
“I would like to personally thank Lee for all his effort since my arrival at the club. “He has been absolutely superb for me both in matches and in training and has earned this move.”
“We wish him all the very best in his career down south.”