Brighton and Hove Albion have accepted a loan offer from Northampton Town for highly-rated midfielder Marc Leonard, according to the Daily Record.
Leonard spent all of last season out on loan at the Sixfields Stadium and earned plaudits from the fans for his performances in the middle of the park before returning to his parent club just a few weeks ago.
Leonard recently signed a two-year contract extension with the Seagulls, keeping him at the club until 2026, and it looks as though manager Roberto De Zerbi is willing to allow the 21-year-old to head back out on loan to continue his development.
Under Jon Brady during the 2022/23 campaign, Leonard made 45 appearances in League Two, just one shy of featuring in every single league outing for the Cobblers as the club finished in third place and achieved promotion to League One.
Football Insider revealed on Sunday that Charlton Athletic, Fleetwood Town and Carlisle United were interested in taking Leonard on loan for a year but it looks as though Northampton Town have won the race.
Not just Leonard
League One is an unforgiving league and Brady is looking to bolster his squad with as much quality as possible to ensure that the team’s stay in England’s third tier is not short-lived.
The Daily Record also reported on Wednesday night that the former Brackley Town boss has been alerted to the possibility of bringing Alex Lowry in on loan from Rangers after an injury-riddled season last term.
Lowry is a more attack-minded player, preferring to play as a number ’10’ or as a winger who can drift inside and create in the central areas. Meanwhile, Leonard prefers playing in deeper positions with a more defensive-minded approach.
Brighton always have the player’s intentions and development at heart when choosing a loan destination. Having excelled under Brady, allowing the 21-year-old to return to the East Midlands to a familiar environment is wise.
However, it won’t be as easy as last season. League One is an unforgiving beast and the young midfielder will be competing in the middle of the park against a tougher array of opponents.