Angry Leeds insist star midfielder has no release clause in contract

By Coral Barry

Leeds have insisted reports that Lewis Cook can leave for just £5million in the summer are completely false.

The 19-year-old midfielder has become one of the most coveted English youngsters in the Championship after a series of eye-catching performances.

The Yorkshire Post and the Sun have both reported in recent days that Cook can leave for just £5million if the Whites fail to gain promotion, but this morning Leeds moved to attack the suggestion of any such agreement.

A statement read: “Leeds United would like to categorically deny reports that have emerged in the local press this morning regarding a supposed release clause in the contract of Lewis Cook.

“The claim by the Yorkshire Evening Post, which the club feels was published with damaging intentions, is entirely inaccurate and unfair reporting.

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“No release clause whatsoever exists in the contract of the player in question.”

Cook’s efforts this season have thought to have attracted the attention of the top clubs, including Manchester United.

Steve Evans spoke earlier in the week about the club moving to extend the midfielder’s contract, which expires in the summer of 2017.

Star man: Sam Byram was regarded as Leeds’ prized asset before his move away

The move of academy star Sam Byram in January to West Ham with just six months left on his contract has further intensified speculation that Cook could be in a similar situation this time next year.

Leeds currently languish in 18th, just nine points above the drop zone after starting the campaign harbouring promotion ambitions.

Cook has made 30 league appearances this season with one goal and an assist to his name.

Leeds face fellow-strugglers Bolton on Saturday in the Championship.