I'm staying next season - Leeds senior man delivers the news that will make fans ecstatic
By Harry Sykes
Chris Wood is committed to staying at Leeds United next season and building upon the promise of 2016-17 despite likely interest from Premier League clubs.
Wood ended a brilliant personal campaign with his 27th league goal in last Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Wigan to make him comfortably the Championship’s top scorer.
It gave him 30 goals in all competitions, only the sixth player in United’s history to reach the landmark, and took his career tally to 100 goals.
The centre-forward has two more years remaining on his Leeds contract after signing for £3million from Leicester in 2015 and insists he is settled at Elland Road and looking forward to returning next season after the club suffered promotion heartache this month.
“I’ve been working hard all season to do what we have been doing, trying to get promoted to the Premier League,” Wood told the Yorkshire Evening Post. “It’s been a great season at the end of the day and we’re all looking to build next season now.”
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Everton, Stoke and West Ham are among the clubs who have been linked with summer moves for Wood but the player made it clear he is keen to remain under the guidance of Garry Monk following the best season of his career.
There have been reports that Monk could quit after the club’s final-month collapse meant they finished one place short of the play-off sports but the players have repeatedly called for him to be given an extended contract.
Doubts over Monk’s future have prompted repeated votes of confidence from United’s dressing room and calls for Leeds to back their existing boss with an extended contract.
Wood said to the Yorkshire Evening Post: “We all know and it doesn’t need me to highlight what he’s about. He’s a great manager, he’s a great person and hopefully he’ll be here next season. Hopefully he can get that sorted.
“This summer is huge. We’ve finished just outside the play-offs and we need to be recruiting well, building for next season. It’s going to be a big one. We’ll see what happens.”
Leeds fans will be over the moon that Wood is committed to staying given his significance to the team’s prospects next season.
In other Leeds United transfer news, the club are in a three-horse race to sign a top-flight captain who is desperate to make a move to the Championship big hitters.