Leeds United secure signing of Birmingham City teenager after development leap
Leeds United have secured the signing of teenage Birmingham City winger Amari Miller for an undisclosed fee.
The 18-year-old, a quick wideman with dribbling and finishing ability, has signed a four-year deal at Elland Road after spending the last eight years with the Blues and signed a two-year scholarship deal in July 2019.
He was highly rated at St Andrew's and made his senior debut last season in the Championship, when Lee Bowyer brought him off the bench against Stoke City, after a big leap in his development over the past year.
Having not played an awful lot of football for their Under 18s in the 2019/20 season season, he began to stand out last season, so much so that he made the jump straight to senior football at the end of the season.
Former Leeds midfielder Bowyer hoped a taste of first team football would inspire the teenager, who will bolster the midfield options for Leeds Under 23s boss Mark Jackson.
“[He adds] Goals, assists, pace, something that we probably lack a bit is pace," said Bowyer.
"He’s at that age where he is fearless. When he came on against Stoke, he got himself into an area and wasn’t afraid to go at the defender. I think he will be a good player. He just needs to keep working hard. Hopefully, this taste that he’s having will drive him on for next season.
“I like him as a person, his manners and he’s respectful. The senior players love him as well. He’s going to make mistakes, but he keeps going. He’s fitted into the group well."
Two more substitute appearances followed before, with safety secured, Bowyer was able to hand Miller his first two starts.
Birmingham offered the youngster a professional contract in May but he opted to turn it down, favouring a move to Elland Road instead.
Miller said his goodbyes to the club where he has grown up in a social media message this afternoon. It read: "I send this message with a heavy heart. Sadly, it is time to say goodbye to the place I have called home since I was 10 years old.
"I am so grateful to the coaches, the staff, all the people at Birmingham City Football Club and most especially the fans, who have helped me get to this point in my career."