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Summer Leeds United target Chuba Akpom stuck in limbo at Arsenal

Leeds manager Thomas Christiansen looks on during the Sky Bet Championship match between Cardiff City and Leeds United at Cardiff City Stadium on September 26, 2017 in Cardiff, Wales.

Chuba Akpom wanted to leave Arsenal for regular first-team football - but a move to Leeds United or Celtic never materialised.

Chuba Akpom of Arsenal celebrates after winning a penalty which lead to his sides second goal during the EFL Cup Third Round match between Nottingham Forest and Arsenal at City Ground on...

At the age of 22, Chuba Akpom is perhaps a little old to still be stuck in the reserves. The striker appears to be caught in limbo at Arsenal, however, as he is far away from challenging for a place in the first-team yet was seemingly unable to secure a move away in the summer.

Though that was not due to a shortage of interest. According to The Mirror, Akpom wanted to leave The Emirates in search of more regular first-team football in July with Leeds United and Celtic only too happy to oblige.

Aston Villa have also been linked in the past, per the Birmingham Mail, manager Steve Bruce knowing Akpom well from his time in charge of Hull City. The striker arrived on loan from Arsenal and featured regularly as The Tigers won promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs.

Chuba Akpom of Hull City celebrates with the trophy after the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Final match between Hull City and Sheffield Wednesday at Wembley Stadium on May 28, 2016 in... 

Far from prolific

Akpom still only scored three goals in 36 appearances that season, however. And that has been an issue throughout his admittedly short-lived career so far.

The England Under-21 international spent time on loan at Brighton and Hove Albion in the second half of 2016/17 but failed to find the net in 10 appearances despite The Seagulls soaring to a second placed finish.

Chuba Akpom of Brighton & Hove Albion signals to a team-mate  during the Sky Bet Championship match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Wigan Athletic at Amex Stadium on April 17, 2017 in...

And even in reserve football, Akpom appears to be having trouble getting his name on the scoresheet. The Canning Town-born youngster has played three games for The Gunners’ Under-23s this season but hasn’t scored a single goal.

Although the season is young, we’re reaching the point where it’s acceptable to wonder just how good Akpom is – and whether he could have made an impact at Leeds let alone Arsenal. Scottish champions Celtic are also unlikely to lose any sleep with the prolific Leigh Griffiths and Moussa Dembele sharing goalscoring duties.

A tally of three goals across 46 second tier appearances for Hull and Brighton doesn’t exactly suggest that Leeds have been hard done by with Pierre-Michel Lasogga leading the line instead.

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