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“He’s got real energy” – England U-19s boss full of praise for Leeds’ Darko Gyabi

England Under-19s manager Simon Rusk believes Leeds United midfielder Darko Gyabi to be a player of “real energy”, and even to possess leadership qualities which could make him a potential captain in future.

Rusk’s comments came after Gyabi featured in England Under-19s 1-0 victory against Hungary in the Under-19 European Championships qualifying yesterday evening.

Sonny Perkins – another highly regarded young prospect for the Whites – also made an appearance.

Gyabi arrived at Elland Road from Manchester City last summer for a reported fee of approximately £5m – a figure which was indicative of how much the Leeds club hierarchy valued the 19-year-old.

The youngster was England’s captain for the game, a decision which Rusk justified to Yorkshire Evening Post in an interview post-match.

“He’s got real energy,” Rusk said.

“I think what I do have is, there are a few players who would possibly be deserving of the armband.

“Obviously, we had the camp in September and Darko lent himself to some leadership roles, he captained the group in one of the games.

“We lost [former captain] Sammy Braybrooke unfortunately, due to a nasty injury earlier in the season, so Darko’s stepped up to that well.”

Gyabi has currently made three appearances for Leeds’ first team – the most notable of these coming in an EFL Cup clash against Wolves last November.

He will be hoping that getting more minutes whilst on international duty will prove a crucial step in his development – and may even force Whites’ boss Javi Gracia to consider him for further first team appearances.

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