By Joe Ellis

17th Aug, 2022 | 8:10am

Leeds United make academy signing as teenager Charlie Crew joins from Cardiff

Leeds United have signed Cardiff City starlet Charlie Crew on a two-year scholarship deal, according to LUFC Youth on Twitter.

The 16-year-old is already captain of the Wales Under-17s squad but had not agreed on professional or scholarship terms with the Bluebirds.

That opened the door for Leeds to swoop in and make further gains to their academy sides after the signing of West Ham United attacker Sonny Perkins earlier this summer.

Crew will be a scholar at Thorp Arch for the next two seasons after which, a decision will have to be made as to whether he is signed to a professional deal when he is 18 or if he is released back into the wild.

Leeds United do have the option to offer a professional deal much earlier than that if the Welshman impresses and he could even sign on his 17th birthday if the offer is presented to him.

Foundations

Victor Orta and his team have been very active in signing players for the academy for a few years now and the benefits are starting to make themselves known at Elland Road.

Joe Gelhardt, Sam Greenwood and Lewis Bate have all made their debuts for the Whites having signed as teenagers to play in the academy and there will be many more to come if this rate carries on.

Mateo Joseph Fernandez was the only addition in January last season but he has also started to hit his stride for the Under-23s and the business model is proving to work.

Leeds have to be careful not to sign too many players for their academy that will then get in the way of those who have come through the ages with the club such as Charlie Cresswell who is now on loan in the Championship at Millwall.

Crew is just the latest of a long line of teenage signings and he certainly wonโ€™t be the last if Orta stands by this transfer policy.

In other Leeds United news, Thomas Tuchel is likely to be without two of his key midfield players for the trip to Elland Road on Sunday.