Leeds United finally confirmed on Wednesday morning that their academy has been upgraded to Category One status.

That means that the club’s under-23s will now compete in the Premier League 2 from next season, with the Whites finally getting the credit they deserve.

Marcelo Bielsa has been a big fan of the academy system at Thorp Arch, frequently utilising the likes of Jamie Shackleton, Robbie Gotts, Jordan Stevens and many more this season.

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Leeds have had one of the best academies in the country for many years now, and this upgrade has certainly been a long-time coming.

Just look at the likes of James Milner, Fabian Delph and Lewis Cook in recent years who are enjoying great success in the Premier League.

One player who also came through the ranks is Simon Johnson. The retired-midfielder has reacted to the upgrade claiming that as a young player he would do all it takes to move to Leeds.

“I am seriously not being biased but if I was a top young player in the country I’d do whatever it took to get in at this academy,” he wrote on his personal Twitter account.

“It has gone from strength to strength and the stats are outrageous.”

Johnson came through the ranks at Thorp Arch and despite only going to make nine appearances for the senior side, he will know what it takes to succeed with the Whites.

The midfielder went on to play for the likes of Sunderland and Doncaster and even admitted that he believes Leeds are amongst the best academies in the entire country.

Should that be the case, the Whites will certainly start to attract even brighter talents than they already do – exciting times ahead.

In other Leeds United news, Marcelo Bielsa addresses JKA departure as Whites prepare for Stoke clash


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