Date:Friday March 17 2006
Kevin Blackwell says he has no intention of throwing new signing Jermaine Beckford into the promotion dog fight ... not just yet.
The youngster signed a three-and-a-half year deal at the club after passing a medical on Wednesday evening. The undisclosed fee was agreed with non-league side Wealdstone, with part of the deal seeing the Whites play a pre-season friendly against the Middlesex club at their Northwood Park ground.
Jermaine Beckford: 'I still can't believe I am up here. I only found out about the move on Tuesday and it hasn't sunk in yet - I am still gobsmacked.
'I was very nervous at the medical and was not sure what I was supposed to be doing but it was all very hi-tech. They told me to relax during it but I said I didn't know how to!
'It's a dream move and my family can't believe it either, my Mum and Dad were very emotional and we can't believe it is happening. It's a dream come true because this is something I wanted to happen since I first started playing football.
'I am not quite sure when I will be making my first appearance, I will have to try and fit in first and get used to my new team-mates then look to prove myself. There were a few clubs that came in for me and I am very grateful to them for showing interest in me but I thought Leeds would be the best club in the long run.
'They are a massive club and have managed to produce some great players. It would be amazing to play in the Premiership if the club gets promoted this season.'
Blackwell: 'To score 35 goals in any league is a remarkable achievement but it won't be that easy for him anymore, he's making a huge step up but if he's prepared to learn from us then he's got a great chance.
'It would be pointless me just throwing him straight into the action, that's not the way you bring players on, we'll give him plenty of time to adjust and get used to things here and the pressure will not be on him at all. We're looking towards the future with this signing, not the here and now.'
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