Pearce welcomes Sharp and Cooper arrivals as Leeds chase Agard

Billy Sharp joining Leeds United.
Billy Sharp joining Leeds United.
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LEEDS UNITED captain Jason Pearce has welcomed the flurry of transfer activity that has included the capture of Billy Sharp and Liam Cooper.

The Elland Road club have been busy in the last few days after the threadbare nature of their squad was laid bare in the opening day defeat at Millwall.

Since then, Giuseppe Bellusci, a 24-year-old central defender from Serie B side Catania, has signed on a season long loan deal.

Sharp, the former Sheffield United and Doncaster Rovers striker, also joined yesterday on a two-year deal, while Chesterfield defender Cooper last night completed his switch for around £600,000 after undergoing a medical yesterday.

United are determined their recruitment won’t end there, either, with Rotherham United’s Kieran Agard also understood to be back on the West Yorkshire club’s radar.

Whether Agard, the Millers’ top scorer last term with 26 goals, can be lured up the M1 remains to be seen but Pearce is adamant that this week’s business will hugely strengthen Leeds’s prospects for this 

He said: “Competition is what we need, as it is healthy for the team, and these will be good signings.

“Billy has been about a little bit but he is a top striker. He is a goalscorer and will be a major boost to the squad.

“We are getting a good mix, as we have brought some youngsters in but we also need the experience we have as well.”

Also pleased to welcome Sharp, 28, is head coach Dave Hockaday, who added: “Billy is a prolific goalscorer and is tried and tested at Championship level. He was desperate to come here and play for us.”

Sharp, a long-time target of United, arrives at Elland Road after having spent last season out on loan at, first, Reading and then Doncaster Rovers.

Last night, Leeds also signed Cooper, who impressed against Hockaday’s men in pre-season, and will join the squad to face Middlesbrough on Saturday. Hull City will receive around £150,000 as part of a sell-on clause.

Again, Pearce believes the move will be a major boost for United. The 26-year-old central defender said: “We played against Liam against Chesterfield and he is a left-sided centre half. He is an excellent player and has a good future ahead of him.

“We will be pushing each other for that left-sided place. He is very good on the ball, has a great left foot and it is great competition. If he is playing better than me, then he will play. And that is how it should be.”