Leeds United teenager Niall Huggins has just enjoyed a dream week at Elland Road – with three major steps towards making his first-team debut coming in the space of seven days. Little surprise, given the versatile Wales Under-21 international has been impressing in Mark Jackson’s Under-23 side this season.
It all started last Friday. Ahead of the clash against Everton – which the Whites won 1-0 thanks to a brilliant striker from summer signing Raphinha. – LUTV posted a video behind the scenes from Leeds training. In the midst of the clip, which included defender Nohan Kenneh called up and Diego Llorente back in training, Huggins appeared.
A promotion to first-team training was more than deserved for Huggins, who has shown enormous versatility for the Under-23’s – being used in attacking midfield, out wide, right-back and left-back. A teenage Stuart Dallas could be in the making. Below, we see a video of Huggins running alongside Pascal Struijk.
A big shot of confidence for 19-year-old Huggins, but it was about to get a whole lot better. Following the win over Everton, his agent and Leeds icon Ian Harte took to Twitter to confirmed that Huggins had made the trip to Goodison Park as part of the Leeds squad. He was one of the reserve players used by Leeds – though he was not named on the bench.
Two huge steps towards the first team for Huggins, then, who has not really been sniffing around the senior side beforehand. But the best news of all for the hard-working utility player came just under a week later – just over 24 hours before the trip to Stamford Bridge when the Whites take on Chelsea.
Indeed, Leeds confirmed on their social media channels and on their website that Huggins had put pen to paper on a contract that will run until the summer of 2023. Promotion to first-team training, included in the squad that travelled to Everton and earning a new deal all in the space of seven days. One to watch out for, then.