The permanent addition of Jack Harrison for £11m represents ‘phenomenal business’ from Leeds United, Noel Whelan has told Football Insider.
After three years on loan in Yorkshire, Harrison is now officially a Leeds player. The Whites paid his erstwhile parent club Manchester City an £11m fee to sign him outright.
The 24-year-old was directly involved in 16 Premier League goals in 2020/21 (eight goals, eight assists). Only Patrick Bamford (24) recorded more goal contributions for Leeds.
Whelan, who played for Leeds as a striker between 1993 and 1995, has said that the club have reaped the rewards of shrewdly negotiating an option to buy Harrison last summer.
He feels that the deal has set an early benchmark for the summer transfer window, which opened on 9 June, telling Football Insider: “£10million-£11million for a player like Jack Harrison, wow, that’s phenomenal business in today’s market.
“Credit to the club for negotiating the permanent option before he had proved himself in the Premier League.
“This is amazing business from Leeds. At that price, it’s the signing of the summer by any team.”
‘Signing of the summer’ is quite a statement from Whelan, but who’s to say Harrison won’t be in the conversation? Indeed, if he can improve on last season’s impressive tallies, £11m will seem like a snip.
There’s every reason to think he will improve further. He’s only 24 years old and, towards the end of the 2020/21 season, he looked more confident and more accomplished than ever, as illustrated by a goal and two assists in April’s 4-0 thrashing of Burnley.
If last season’s loan hadn’t included a permanent option, Leeds would probably have had to pay at least double what they have spent on him. As it is, they’ve very astutely saved themselves crucial funds for the remainder of their summer transfer business.
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