White, Young Guns Baru Leeds

Kemenangan 4-0 Leeds United atas Crystal Palace di babak kedua Carling Cup (Piala Liga Inggris) meninggalkan beberapa catatan. Ini adalah kemenangan pertama Leeds atas tim dari divisi di atasnya (Championship) sejak Leeds terdegradasi ke League One musim lalu.

Kemenangan 4-0 Leeds juga terasa sebagai sebuah kejutan karena empat hari sebelumnya, Leeds tertahan 1-1 oleh tuan rumah Yeovil Town pada pertandingan lanjutan League One. Pada dua pertandingan sebelumnya, Leeds menang 2-1 atas Scunthorpe United dan kalah 0-2 dari Oldham Athletic.

Pertandingan di Piala Liga kemarin juga mencatat nama satu lagi pemain muda debutan dari akademi sepakbola Leeds yang masuk tim senior, yaitu bek kiri berusia 16 tahun, Aidan White.

White menambah panjang daftar pemain muda Leeds yang masuk tim senior, menyusul pendahulunya yang sebagian besar telah pndah ke klub lain, seperti Harry Kewell, Jonathan Woodgate, Alan Smith, Paul Robinson, James Milner, Simon Walton, hingga Jonathan Howson.

Nama terakhir, Jonathan Howson, adalah salah satu pemain muda yang musim lalu bersinar sebagai gelandang serang Leeds. Pemain berusia 18 tahun tersebut disebut-sebut sebagai new Harry Kewell.

Meskipun bermain di level League One, Leeds United tetap mempertahankan identitasnya sebagai salah satu klub tradisional di Inggris Raya yang terus memproduksi dan mengorbitkan pemain-pemain muda ‘produk sendiri’, seperti julukannya di era keemasan awal 2000an, Mighty White Young Guns.

Marching On Together!!

Berikut artikel tentang Aidan White di leedsunited.com

A proud night for homegrown youngster Aidan…

The latest talent to roll off the Leeds United Academy production line was proud to make his debut against Crysyal Palace on Tuesday night.

Aidan White became the fifth16-year-old since 2002 to pull on the famous white shirt, following in the footsteps of James Milner, Aaron Lennon, Simon Walton, and Tom Elliott when he lined up at left-back for the Carling Cup clash against Palace.

“I felt really proud,” he told LUTV.

“It was a dream come true. I’ve supported Leeds all of my life. I found out I was playing at training on Monday and I was shocked.

“I didn’t see it coming – it came straight out of the blue.”

Manager Gary McAllister said he was delighted with Aidan’s debut – and insisted his call-up was more than deserved.

“To people who’ve seen him play it was no surprise,” said the boss.

“He caught the eye a long time ago. We’ve tried to fast track him in the reserves. I didn’t think it would be a case where he would be playing first team football. We thought a season in the reserves rather than the youth team would be perfect.

“But if you’re good enough. No problem. We’d seen enough to throw him in and I knew he would be okay. He did more than that. It was an outstanding debut for a 16-year-old. He played against some pacey midfielders, some wingers who have represented their country and did very well.

“Palace were in the Play-Offs not long ago, but the lad showed he has plenty in his locker. He has fantastic pace, but he’s brave as well.

“I’m not going to put pressure on him by saying he’s going to do this or that because I don’t think that’s right, but we were more than pleased and I hope he enjoyed his night.”

sumber foto: leedsunited.com


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