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Five Leeds United Under-23s who need loans out next season

Leeds United’s Under-23s have been nothing more than exceptional in their performances for the club this season. It’s been a riches story born from a rags beginning.

Reborn under Andrea Radrizzani, restocked by Victor Orta, the Under-23s have won the Professional Development League North, reached the semi-final of the Premier League Cup and, on Monday, face Birmingham City at Elland Road in the Professional Development League Final.

As the Leeds youngsters prepare for that particular battle on Bank Holiday Monday, one that is free to watch for their adoring public, thoughts will turn to preparations for next season. As glorious a campaign that this has been for what is essentially the Leeds United reserve set-up, the management will want to push these players on.

With that in mind, here’s five of those players who would benefit from a move out of Elland Road next year to play first XI football on a regular basis.

Five Leeds United Under-23s who should be loaned out next season

1. Paudie O’Connor: Irish youngster O’Connor was plucked from League of Ireland side Limerick FC and brought over to England to play for Leeds’ Under-23s. He’s featured four times for Leeds United though last season as they hit the injury skids. This season he’s been on two League One loan deals: to Blackpool and to Bradford City. He’s been more successful in the latter – with Bantams boss Gary Bowyer wanting to bring him back for their League Two campaign. That would be a good move for the 21-year-old Irish lad.

2. Hugo Diaz: Spanish youngster Diaz joined Leeds United at the opening of the summer 2017 transfer window from Silva SD. He’d been brought up through the youth system at Deportivo La Coruña. He’s grown whilst at Elland Road and has become a cultured defender-cum-defensive midfielder for Carlos Corberan’s Under-23s side. He featured once for the first team, a 33-minute appearance from the bench in a 3-1 defeat against Preston after Pontus Jansson went off injured. Much is thought of Diaz and a move to a League One outfit would see him develop further.

3. Pascal Struijk: 19-year-old Dutch youngster Struijk started out his football journey with ADO Den Hag and then the famed Ajax Academy. It was from the Dutch giants that the then 18-year-old joined the Whites. He’s a centre-back by trade and a solid unit of one at that. His footballing pedigree means that he’s good with the ball at his foot and solidly schooled in his defensive duties. He’s also a threat up front, he scored in three successive game for the young Whites this season. Despite his age, a season on loan in either League One or Two would be a boon both for player and Leeds United as a club.

4. Kun Temenuzhkov: a name that would need proof-reading everytime it is printed in the club shop, but what a player. Signed by the Whites from world football giants Barcelona, a lot was expected of the youngster. After all, the season before he joined Leeds he netted 31 goals in 29 games for Barcelona’s Cadete A side. He’s not hit the straps that well at Elland Road but there’s definitely more than potential there. He’ll still be a tender 19-year-old when next season kicks off and to continue his improvement he’d benefit from a loan out of Elland Road. Playing regularly for a League One side would bring him on quicker than another season in the Under-23s.

5. Ryan Edmondson: Edmondson joined Leeds United from home town side York City as a 16-year-old and he’s come on massively in that time. Just turned 17, he’s already featured twice for the first-team at Elland Road: in last season’s final game against QPR and an appearance off the bench this season in the loss to Birmingham at Elland Road. However, it’s his bustling performances for the Under-23s that have caught the eye. To press, with one game left, the youngster has fired in 19 goals during the Professional Development League North season. A full season in League Two might be just what the doctor ordered for Edmondson.

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