'Might be better than Clarke' - Whelan gushes over Leeds teen who's 'going to the very top'


Noel Whelan has hailed Leeds United teenager Jamie Shackleton as a huge talent who is “going to the very top”.

The Elland Road academy product, 19, has graduated from the club’s youth ranks this season to establish himself as a regular member of the senior squad.

Shackleton has caught the eye of ex-Leeds striker Whelan during his 22 appearances for the club, all of which have come during the current campaign.

“I wish I had seen a bit more of him during the season,” Whelan exclusively told Football Insider. “He is just as good as Jack Clarke, and might be better than Clarke. 

“He is very direct, very fast, tenacious, a good passer of the ball and makes things happen. It’s nice to see Clarke and Shackleton regularly in the first-team squad, but fans would like to see more of Shackleton. He’s got a bit of everything and is going to the very top.”

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Shackleton has mainly played in midfield for Leeds’ youth teams but Marcelo Bielsa has used him at both right-back and in central midfield for the senior side.

The teenager has made 19 league appearances this season but 16 of those have come as a substitute and he has not featured since the win over Reading in early March.

In other Leeds United news, Marcelo Bielsa has high first-team hopes for loaned-out 22-year-old who has caught his eye.