There are plenty of young players worth keeping an eye on in the Championship this season for Leeds United.
With the club not repeating last summer’s £100million spending spree in the current window, the Whites may look to the second tier for reinforcements.
This is something that the club have looked into already over the last few weeks as a potential move for Huddersfield Town midfielder Lewis O’Brien has been widely reported.
With his price tag, which is understood to be less than £10m, considerably cheaper than similar players across Europe, it is a tactic that might help to save Leeds some money in the long term.
There will be a number of players in the division that Marcelo Bielsa and his recruitment team will be keeping tabs on this term.
We have looked into a couple of the youngsters who may be worth tracking over the next 12 months.
Fabio Carvalho – Fulham
Picking out Fabio Carvalho as one of the Championship’s outstanding prospects is almost too easy. The 18-year-old has already been linked with a move to West Yorkshire and his performances in just four matches this season highlight exactly why.
With three goals and an assist so far this season, he looks to be improving with every game under Marco Silva. The Lisbon-born midfielder has reportedly been the subject of interest from Leeds, West Ham, Norwich and Porto this summer and he will certainly on the radars of those clubs this time next year.
Jason Knight – Derby County
One of the silver linings that has come out of Derby County’s financial problems is that they have been forced to bleed some of their young talent into the first-team squad. Jason Knight has been one of the standout players for Wayne Rooney’s side over the last couple of seasons.
The seven-time Republic of Ireland international looks the real deal with consistently impressive performances in the Championship and with the issues facing the Rams, he may be available at a cut-price at the end of the season.
Knight picked up an injury in training after a tough tackle, incidentally from his manager, left him sidelined for eight to twelve weeks, however, he will come back into the side as soon as he’s fit.
Ben Cabango – Swansea City
Another second-tier player with experience playing for their country is Swansea City’s Ben Cabango. The 21-year-old was part of Wales’ Euro 2020 squad after showing maturity beyond his years on the pitch at club level.
His off-the-field antics have been questioned on several occasions but when he crosses the white line, his conduct is exceptional.
Brennan Johnson – Nottingham Forest
Arguably Nottingham Forest’s brightest young prospect, Brennan Johnson also has international pedigree as he too has represented Wales at senior level on a couple of occasions.
Johnson has looked very bright so far this season despite his side’s poor form. He got an assist in their opening game of the campaign for a goal that really should have seen Chris Hughton’s men get something from the game.
They have lost both of their subsequent games but that hasn’t been in any way down to Johnson who was lively yet again in the defeat to Blackburn Rovers. He is certainly worth keeping an eye on this term as Forest look to get themselves out of early trouble.
Max Bird – Derby County
Another midfielder at Derby that isn’t far from being ready for the step up to the top flight is Max Bird. Like Knight, the 20-year-old was a key part of the Derby team that just managed to stay in the Championship last term.
He will be looking for more of the same this season after playing in all four of the Rams’ opening league fixtures. Similarly to his Irish midfield partner, Bird might be on the market below his true valuation due to the problems facing Derby at the moment.