Leeds ‘leading race’ for new Jude Bellingham as clubs line-up moves

Jesse Marsch praises Arsenal

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Leeds are reportedly leading the race to sign Birmingham youngster George Hall. The 18-year-old has been compared to England international Jude Bellingham, who also came through the Blues’ academy before starring for their first team as a teenager.

Leeds moved away from the Premier League relegation zone on Saturday as they overturned a 3-1 deficit to defeat Bournemouth 4-3. But Jesse Marsch’s side have struggled for form this season and are in desperate need of reinforcements.

According to The Sun, Hall is wanted by a number of Premier League clubs, despite a lack of game time over the last two months. And Leeds head the hunt. Hall’s reduced minutes are encouraging teams to pounce in January as they believe Birmingham could be willing to let him depart. And the Whites could try their luck when the transfer window opens in the New Year.

Hall made his first-team debut for Birmingham at the start of this year and was expected to kick on and hold down a regular place in John Eustace’s side during this campaign after signing a new contract in the summer. But the Blues have signed other midfielders and could now try to raise valuable funds by cashing in on the teenager.

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Hall’s rise in the west Midlands is redolent to that of Bellingham’s, who broke into the Birmingham first-team as a 16-year-old at the start of the 2019/20 campaign before moving to Germany the following summer. And he has since gone on to star for club and country.

Hall signed his first professional deal just over a year ago, shortly after making the first of eight appearances for the England under-18s. And after putting pen-to-paper, the talented ace said: “It is amazing, obviously. I have been at the club for so long. It’s a real proud moment for me and my family, and I’m just delighted that I could sign my contract here.

“Signing my first professional contract feels like the next step and, hopefully, I can push on and start playing more regularly in the under-23s and push on to break into the first-team. I’m a box-to-box midfielder and I like to get up and down the pitch. I like to get forward and score and create goals. But I also like to get back, win the ball back for my team and make some tackles.”

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Hall started all three of England under-19s’ European Championship qualifiers at the end of September and found the back of the net in the third game against Denmark. But he has only started five of Birmingham’s 19 Championship matches this term.

According to the Daily Mail, numerous top-flight scouts watched the player star in a 3-0 victory over Bristol City at the start of October. And clubs have made enquiries about his availability. So Leeds could have a battle on their hands if they want to secure his signature.

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