Many Leeds United fans were surprised by the club’s decision to sell Clarke Oduor on transfer deadline day.
When Leeds announced the loan signing of Eddie Nketiah in the final hours of the summer transfer window, it appeared that the Elland Road faithful could relax and the Whites were about to see out a deadline day that threw up no nasty surprises – for a change.
Leeds are rarely the side that announces a raft of signings in the last moments of the window. But they have certainly seen their fair share of drama, and managed to spark sheer disbelief in the fans on a number of occasions.
And while the events of Thursday will almost definitely not become as infamous as the incidents involving the likes of Luciano Becchio, Dominic Poleon and Daniel James, it appears that Leeds could not resist providing their supporters with a head-scratch-inducing announcement as the minutes in the window ticked away.
The club announced right at the death that they had agreed to sell Clarke Oduor to Barnsley on a permanent basis, making Oduor the fourth Whites youngster the Tykes had signed this summer, with Alex Wollerton, Aapo Halme and Mallik Wilks also heading to Oakwell.
Oduor left Leeds having only made one first-team appearance for Marcelo Bielsa’s side. But he was one of the youngsters who inspired a buzz whenever he featured for the under-23s, and he was included in the 16-man squad that travelled to Australia for the club’s pre-season trip.
It appeared that the 20-year-old was destined to enjoy a more prominent role in Bielsa’s plans during the coming campaign. He looked to have a fantastic chance of being in the matchday squad on a more regular basis given his ability to play anywhere down the left flank.
It is definitely fair to argue that he would have been fourth-choice left-back had he stayed, and probably been even further down the pecking order as a winger. But given Leeds’ luck with injury last term, there would have been a good chance that he could have been in a much better position by the end of the campaign.
Loaning him out would have arguably made a lot of sense. He could have played regularly and would likely return to Thorp Arch next summer a much better player much closer to realising his full potential.
Had he struggled out on loan however, then selling him next summer would have been a much more understandable move.
Bielsa may have decided that Oduor did not kick on in the way that he would have hoped after being lined up for a more important role. But the signs were all pointing towards the youngster having a bright future ahead of him at Leeds.
It does, right now, appear to be a puzzling decision to let Oduor leave. So many Leeds fans are now intrigued to find out whether the club were right to sell or whether the Whites have made a big mistake in letting him go on a permanent basis.