Leeds local hero proud to be leader of men

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Leeds United have confirmed Jonny Howson as their new club captain ahead of the start of the Npower Championship season to help spearhead their promotion push.

The 23-year-old was ever-present for the Whites last season, starting all 50 of the club's games, and manager Simon Grayson says Howson was the ideal candidate for the position.

"Jonny will be our captain this season," confirmed the boss. "We've got other people in the team who could be captain, but they all lead in different ways.

"I think Jonny's thrived on the responsibility that he's been given. He's a local lad, he loves the club and he leads by example."

Howson has made over 200 appearances for Leeds since his graduation from the club's youth academy and wore the captains armband for the majority of last season in the absence of Richard Naylor.

He scored 11 goals for United last season, his best ever return as he thrived in his first full season in the Npower Championship.

After impressing against Barclays Premier League outfit Newcastle United during the club's friendly victory on Saturday, Grayson confirmed the player would be given more licence in attack next season.

"He gets into little areas where he can hurt defenders," said the boss. "He's very aware, and he does the defensive side as well. He's got all the attributes to make that position a success."

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