Elland Road teen could ease Sinisterra blow
With Leeds United having dropped down into the Championship following three seasons in the top flight, it was perhaps expected that something of a mass exodus would occur at Elland Road, with as many as 15 first-team assets ultimately moving on in various loan and permanent moves.
Among those who did depart was Colombian international, Luis Sinisterra, with the £21m addition having been snapped up by AFC Bournemouth on deadline day on a season-long loan, after scoring once from just two league appearances so far this term.
While that temporary exit comes following what was an injury-disrupted 2022/23 campaign for the former Feyenoord man, he did still make his mark last season with seven goals from just 22 outings in all competitions, ensuring he will leave a notable void in Daniel Farke’s ranks moving forward.
Who will replace Sinisterra at Leeds?
The Whites did swiftly move to try and plug that gap as Jaidon Anthony made the move in the other direction from the Cherries, with the 23-year-old loanee previously bagging eight goals and six assists in the second tier in 2021/22 to help his parent club to promotion.
It remains to be seen just how the Englishman will adapt to life in west Yorkshire however, although Farke and co do also have the bonus of having kept hold of teenage starlet, Wilfried Gnonto, despite the 19-year-old having been the subject of strong interest from Everton.
After initially refusing to play and handing in a transfer request as he looked to join the queue of departures over the summer, the Italy international is now back in the fold to help try and propel the club back into the Premier League, having notably netted in the 4-3 thriller against Ipswich Town last month.
Farke will also have the likes of Crysencio Summerville and Daniel James to call upon as options on the flanks, although the former Norwich City boss may be wise to look to the academy to find another devastating attacking talent, such as 18-year-old, Luca Thomas.
Who is Luca Thomas?
The versatile forward – who can operate out wide or in a central striker role – was rewarded with his first professional contract last year amid what has been a fine run of form at academy level in recent times, with the youngster proving himself something of a goal machine of late.
With experience training with the first-team already under his belt, the Crewe-born sensation only recently hit the headlines after bagging a clinical hat-trick against Brighton and Hove Albion in the opening game of the new Premier League 2 season.
That was followed by an assist in the subsequent 2-1 victory over rivals Manchester United, ensuring that the Englishman now boasts four goal involvements from just four outings at U21 level so far this season.
Having been poached from Manchester City’s youth set-up back in the summer of 2021, Thomas went on to prove a particularly prolific presence at U18 level for the Yorkshire giants with 23 goals and three assists in just 32 games at that age group to date.
That stellar return included 15 goals in just 17 U18 Premier League games during his debut season at Elland Road, while he also caught the eye after netting from his inside own half against Newcastle United back in January.
Such consistent form since arriving in Leeds would suggest that the exciting left-footer can go on to join the likes of Gnonto and Anthony in forming part of Farke’s attacking arsenal, with such a promotion likely to help ease the loss of the aforementioned Sinisterra.
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