Exclusive: Whelan claims Leeds could sign 'ready-made' attacker after Friday development


Noel Whelan says that Mallik Wilks’ permanent exit from Leeds United could see the Whites bring in a “ready-made” signing for next season.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Elland Road striker and lifelong fan says that the 20-year-old has some way to go before proving himself as a Championship quality forward and that Leeds need a higher level of quality among their squad.

Leeds confirmed on Friday that Wilks had joined fellow second-tier side Barnsley in a permanent move, having spent last season on loan at Doncaster Rovers.

Acknowledging that Wilks had performed well during his temporary spell in League One, Whelan insists that Marcelo Bielsa should be looking for more experience and that his exit could free up the funds to secure a new signing.

Whelan told Football Insider: “I know he did well at Doncaster last season but it’s a division below. He is a good young player – could he develop into that Championship goalscorer? Only time will tell but that time will tell somewhere else.

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“Maybe we’re looking for a little bit more quality, a little bit more of a proven Championship striker and it seems as though there are opportunities and money freed up to go and do that. Once again it’s wage bill, we’re lowering it, we’re freeing up money for a ready-made player to come in.

“We probably need to have a bigger squad for the Championship because it’s a gruelling campaign. Maybe that’s something he (Bielsa) could learn from – you need more bodies, you need more options.”

Wilks managed to make just one first-team appearance for Leeds during his time at Elland Road, while he managed to score 16 goals in 55 appearances for Doncaster during his loan spell.

In the latest Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that a £6million-valued Elland Road ace has been given just a few days to find a new club.