Accrington Stanley could lose Ross Sykes with League One rivals Sunderland allegedly keen, but what about Championship title hopefuls Leeds United?

Two years ago, a little-known defender by the name of Ross Sykes had a trial at Leeds United.

The Burnley-born 18-year-old played in a reserve clash against Tadcaster Albion in June 2017, despite the fact that he had failed to make a single League Two appearance for Accrington Stanley during the previous campaign.

He is the fourth player from the left in the second picture below. At 6ft 4ins, it is fair to say he stands out.

Obviously, Leeds did not feel the need to sign Sykes at the time. But flash forward to the present day and director of football Victor Orta should perhaps consider revisiting the deal.

After all, Sykes is no longer warming the bench in League Two. He has established himself as one of the most talented young centre-backs in the third tier of English football, evidenced by links with Sunderland according to the Lancashire Telegraph.

The Lancashire Telegraph adds that Sykes is out of contract in the summer, meaning he would be available for absolutely nothing.

With head coach Marcelo Bielsa reminding everyone that he is one of the best around when it comes to working with young players, the teenager should be on Leeds’ radar again, two years on.

Gaetano Berardi is injury-prone, Paudie O’Connor is struggling on loan and Connor Shaugnessy’s future remains uncertain; there may be room at Elland Road for one more centre-back.

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