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Paul Heckingbottom responds to Leeds United’s interest in Josh Hawkes

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Paul Heckingbottom has distanced himself from the rumours about Josh Hawkes when asked about Leeds’s interest in the player.

According to reports from the Sunderland Echo, Leeds United are one of the four clubs showing interest in Hawkes. Championship rivals Sunderland and Middlesbrough, and Premier League outfit Newcastle United are also reportedly monitoring his progress.

Ahead of Leeds United’s Championship clash against Sunderland, Heckingbottom has refused to be drawn into the transfer speculation involving the Hartlepool United teenager when asked to comment on the link.

Heckingbottom has told Leeds Live that he is not in a position to talk about players of other clubs, and it is pointless discussing about it.

“He’s not our player, he’s not someone who we’re in a position to talk about, anything like that,” said Heckingbottom, as quoted by Leeds Live.

“It would be one for the summer, while reports are going in on players, we’re speaking about individual players.

“Until they’re our player or we’re making a move and there’s news to tell you in that respect, it’s pointless us mentioning it because all that’ll happen is you’ll ask me about a player who I’ve probably never even heard of and I tell you that.

“Then the next person I do comment on you’ll think ‘he must be going for him then.’ So it’s easier not to bother.”

The 19-year-old is a highly rated young talent who plays as an attacking midfielder, and scored on his full debut for Hartlepool United in the 2-1 win over Bromley at the end of March.

Leeds have signed players from non league football earlier this season, for example Sam Dalby, and could move for him in the summer to bolster their under-23 ranks at Thorp Arch.

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