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In profile: New loan recruit Jack Clarke

KIYAN Prince Foundation Stadium has already played a big part in the fledgling career of new signing Jack Clarke.

In January 2019, W12 was the location of his full senior debut for his former club Leeds United.

That came in an Emirates FA Cup tie. QPR, of course, went on to win that third-round match 2-1 thanks to goals from Aramide Oteh and Jake Bidwell and, despite the disappointment on the day, Clarke’s first-team career went from strength to strength from there.

The winger – who can also play up front – signed his first professional contract with Leeds in November 2017, having progressed through their academy ranks.

His first taste of senior football came in October 2018, aged just 17, when he came off the bench in a 1-1 draw with Brentford in the Championship, with his first goal following two months later in a dramatic victory over Aston Villa.

Clarke’s inaugural first-team start came in the aforementioned cup tie in W12 and a week later he was named in the Leeds XI again, this time for a crucial Championship clash against Derby County that the Whites won 2-0.

The England U20 international went on to feature 20 more times for Marcelo Bielsa’s side last term as they secured a top-six finish.

Promotion back to the Premier League would ultimately elude them but two more Leeds appearances would come Clarke’s way, though, as he featured in both legs of their play-off semi-final tie against Derby.

The end of 2018/19 saw Clarke named as Leeds’ Young Player of the Season and bigger things were still to come for the teenager in the summer.

In July 2019, he joined last season’s Champions League finalists Tottenham Hotspur for a fee reportedly in the region of £10m, making him Spurs’ first signing in 517 days.

As part of the deal, Clarke was loaned back to Leeds where he has spent the first half of this season, making three appearances.


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