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Leeds: Graham Smyth drops Nohan Kenneh claim

Graham Smyth has dropped a claim on departing Leeds United midfielder Nohan Kenneh.

What’s been said?

Transfer Focus

In a recent post on Twitter, the Yorkshire Evening Post chief football writer revealed that, after the 19-year-old recently agreed a three-year deal with Scottish Premiership side Hibernian, the Whites will be disappointed to have lost the services of a player as talented as the England youth international.

In his tweet, Smyth said: “Leeds United wanted to keep him. Kenneh evidently sees a better chance of playing elsewhere. By all accounts, a very good lad – has worked his socks off for his education as well as his football.”

Marsch will be gutted

Considering how exciting a prospect Kenneh quite clearly is, it is easy to understand why the Whites were keen to retain the services of the 19-year-old this summer, while it is also likely that Jesse Marsch will be gutted to wave goodbye to the versatile midfielder.

Indeed, the youngster was a key part of Andrew Taylor’s U23 squad this season, making 24 Premier League 2 appearances, scoring one goal and registering one assist along the way – primarily being deployed at centre-back and in defensive midfield.

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The teenager particularly impressed in the 4-0 victory over Crystal Palace U23s back in April, after which Taylor said of the Liberia-born talent:

“He’s obviously played centre-back the last few weeks. He was outstanding tonight. His presence, his pressing and his winning the ball back were really good, but then he was good on the ball. He drove forward, he played passes, as I said, he’s been fasting all day so he’s not had any food or drink which adds another dimension to it.”

It was performances such as this that saw Kenneh called up to both Marcelo Bielsa and Marsch’s 20-man Premier League squads on a number of occasions this season – albeit without making an appearance – with Taylor adding on the midfielder’s progression:

“It’s [Kenneh’s development] been good. He’s bobbed in and out of the first team and then with us, but yes, he’s been great. Nohan – but not just Nohan, there are others – just needs to be patient as well.

“Yes, they maybe haven’t featured in the first team, but they’ve still got time on their hands. They’re still getting exposure with the manager, with the first team and involved, and then come back in here and go perform, and you’ll get your chance.

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“You just need to be patient and sometimes that’s the hard thing with these lads because they all want to be playing. That’s the challenge.”

However, with the academy prospect now having agreed to join Hibs upon the expiry of his current deal at Elland Road this summer, it seems as if the 19-year-old simply could not hold out any longer in his bid to be playing regular first-team football – something which is sure to be a bitter disappointment for Marsch and his backroom staff.

AND in other news: “That could happen..”: Phil Hay drops big summer claim, Leeds supporters surely gutted

Article title: Leeds: Graham Smyth drops Nohan Kenneh claim

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