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Andy Couzens speaks about Leeds youngsters' development

A former Leeds United player has been talking about the club's promising young talent.

Former Leeds player Andy Couzens has been speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post about his time with the club and the young players currently making waves at Elland Road.

Couzens started his career at Leeds and was part of the side that defeated Manchester United in the 1993 FA Youth Cup final.

But despite the midfielder’s promise he would ultimately make just 36 senior appearances for the then-Premier League club, before moving first to Carlisle United and then Blackpool.

Couzens knows better than most what it is like to be a promising young talent at Leeds and he had some words of wisdom for the likes of Alex Mowatt, Lewis Cook and Charlie Taylor in the interview.

“I think we were possibly pushed a little bit early to be in the team and I think the good thing with the lads now is that they are getting the opportunity to play in the first-team in the Championship,” Couzens said.

“I think they would be bit-part players if they were in the Premier League and at the moment and you can’t beat playing in the first-team.”

When you consider the amount of games some of the next crop at Elland Road already have under their belts, it is hard to disagree with Couzens’ assessment.

In Neil Redfearn, Leeds have a manager who knows how to get the best out of young talent; that showing – and keeping – faith in them is often one of the most vital elements when it comes to developing a footballer.

There is still a long way to go before these Leeds youngsters can be spoken of in the same breath as some of the very best the club has seen, but they are going the right way about it, with their long-term futures surely best served at the club where they have been blooded.

“I want these lads to go on and do what Fabian Delph’s done,” Couzens added. “But I want them to do it with Leeds.”

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