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Red Bull Salzburg midfielder Brenden Aaronson has agreed a five-year deal with Leeds, the Premier League club has announced.

The 21-year-old United States international, who worked under Leeds head coach Jesse Marsch during his time in charge at the Austrian club, will formally complete his move to Elland Road for an undisclosed fee on July 1st.

A Leeds statement said: “Leeds United are delighted to announce an agreement with Red Bull Salzburg for the transfer of Brenden Aaronson, which will be completed on July 1st, 2022.

“The 21-year-old will join for an undisclosed fee on a five-year-contract, running until the summer of 2027.

“The transfer is subject to the necessary international clearance and a work permit.”

Aaronson made 41 appearances in all competitions for Salzburg last season as they won the Austrian Bundesliga and Austrian Cup for the second season in succession.

He has 18 senior international caps and scored five goals as the US qualified for this year’s World Cup finals in Qatar.

Aaronson began his career with MLS side Philadelphia Union and scored on his debut in a 1-1 draw with Atlanta United in March 2019.

Capped by his country for the first time the following February, he was named in the MLS Best XI for the 2020 season, during which he played his part as Philadelphia won the Supporters’ Shield for the first time, and earned his move to Salzburg in January 2021.

The midfielder made 24 appearances as the club clinched a league and cup double in his first season in Europe, and his tally for the campaign which has just ended included 10 Champions League games in a run to the last 16.

Aaronson will be on international duty next month for fixtures against Morocco, Uruguay, Grenada and El Salvador before meeting up with his new club-mates in pre-season.

football Sports News

Father went to hospital after Verstappen win

Max Verstappen may have been on top of the world, but his father Jos Verstappen had to be airlifted to hospital shortly after watching the Dutch GP on television.

Dutch reports say the 49-year-old former Formula 1 driver was taken to the hospital in Roermond, in the southern Netherlands, due to stomach and intestinal pain.

De Telegraaf claims he has been treated with antibiotics.

“After that, it should be fine again,” Jos Verstappen confirmed.

Before that, Verstappen snr watched his son Max race to victory from pole position at their home Dutch GP at Zandvoort by watching television at home.

“Jos had been having problems with his intestines for a few days,” Max and Jos’ manager Raymond Vermeulen told Het Laatste Nieuws.

“He watched until halfway through the race, but then couldn’t walk straight anymore.”

Vermeulen says Jos agreed to be checked out in hospital because he plans to travel again soon.

“A precaution,” the Verstappen manager said. “He was then able to go home again. Everything is going well with Jos.”

However, the Verstappen family is unlikely to be too disappointed that they couldn’t celebrate the highly popular Dutch GP dominance all together.

“There was not so much euphoria from Max, because the Verstappen family has only one goal – to become world champion,” said former F1 tyre engineer Kees van de Grint.

“If they don’t get that title by the end of the year, all of this glory and this orange party will be forgotten,” he told RTL GP.

“That’s why Max is so down-to-earth – he knows what a tough task lies ahead of him.”

F1 Sports News

Verstappen’s father hopes Dutch fans won’t boo

Max Verstappen broke with his usual routine on Thursday by doing a ‘track walk’ on home soil at Zandvoort.

“Are you sick or something?” his father Jos jokingly asked him over the phone as the circuit inspection with Red Bull engineers took place on Thursday.

Amid the intense title battle with Lewis Hamilton, the Dutchman said his engineers simply advised the walk take place ahead of this weekend’s race on the highly unique Zandvoort layout.

For Hamilton, who arrived at the circuit wearing an orange-themed outfit, this weekend’s tension will be exacerbated by likely vocal hostility by Verstappen’s fans.

“I hope the audience reacts better to the battle and doesn’t boo Lewis,” Jos Verstappen said. “Max will figure out how to deal with his opponent himself.”

But Max, 23, said he will not be issuing a public plea for the Dutch fans not to boo.

“It is not up to a local football club to go over the loudspeaker and say ‘guys, you cannot boo’ because it will naturally happen,” he said.

“I just have to focus on what I am doing on the track. I’m sure most of them are just here to see cars and racing and have a great weekend.

“I cannot decide for them.”

As for Hamilton, the seven time world champion said recently that those who boo have “hate in their hearts” – but he is now saying he will rise above that extra challenge this weekend.

“It’s just a passion that the fans have – or the dislike that some of them have of their opponents,” said the Mercedes driver.

“They’re probably a small portion in the grandstand out there and I admire the others for being able to withstand the boos too. That’s the sport.”

F1 football Sports News

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen declared winner of aborted Belgian Grand Prix

Max Verstappen was proclaimed as the winner of a farcical Belgian Grand Prix after only two laps were completed behind a safety car.

The 12th round of the Formula One campaign at a rain-soaked Spa-Francorchamps circuit finished three hours and 44 minutes after it was due to begin when the clock finally stopped on an embarrassing afternoon for the sport.

George Russell took second, with Lewis Hamilton third and half-points awarded.

Hamilton’s championship advantage over Verstappen has been reduced to three points.

Seventy-five thousand fans stood in the persistent drizzle for a race due to start at 3pm, pushed back to 3:10pm, 3:15pm and 3:25pm. The safety car took the field away on a formation lap but after eight minutes the race was stopped.

Following two hours and 47 minutes without any action, the FIA’s race director Michael Masi then gave the green light for the race to resume.

The sodden spectators, those who remained in the hope of a race, pumped their fists in delight, with Verstappen’s fans lighting orange flares on the Kemmel Straight.

But after just two laps completed of the rain-drenched 4.35-mile circuit, the race was red-flagged. The sport’s bosses were facing accusations of a cynical manoeuvre with two laps ensuring a classification could be granted.

“I feel really sorry for the fans,” Hamilton said. “They have been incredible to stick with us and hold out for a potential race.

“They knew when they sent us out at the end there that the track wasn’t any better and they did it just so that we could have two laps behind the safety car which is the minimum requirement for a race.

“I hope the fans get their money back.”

Hamilton added: “You couldn’t really see five metres in front of you, and you could not go flat out. It is a shame because it could have been a a good race if it didn’t rain as much.”

Verstappen, who declared the conditions as “fine to race” after it was stopped the first time around, added: “I said at 3:30, ‘Let’s go’.

“The conditions were decent but the visibility was low. If we started at 3, we stood a better chance. It is a win but it is not how you want to win.”

It is the first time in F1’s 71-year history when such few laps have been completed for a classified result. Indeed, it is only the sixth time half-points have been awarded.

The abandoned affair came just 24 hours after British driver Lando Norris was fortunate to emerge unscathed from a terrifying 185mph crash at Eau Rouge in qualifying.

The Spa-Francorchamps venue is considered to be one of the most dangerous tracks on the F1 calendar, with 23 drivers perishing here. Two years ago, French Formula Two driver Anthoine Hubert lost his life after a multi-car collision.

Damon Hill, the 1996 world champion, tweeted: “Brave decision by Michael Masi. If the race had gone ahead and there had been a serious accident, we’d be asking why he started the race. Tough. But ultimately a mature thing to do. Spa has claimed a lot of drivers.”

The remainder of the grid finished where they started with Daniel Ricciardo fourth for McLaren ahead of Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel and the AlphaTauri driver of Pierre Gasly.

Sergio Perez crashed on the way to the grid but took part in the second restart from the pit lane after Red Bull fixed his damaged machine.