We often talk about footballers’ journeys in the game, but at 23 Jack Harrison has already had one to rival most. And now he has arrived at the promised land of the Premier League, announcing himself in the most glorious fashion. Getting to know the story behind one of the brightest young prospects in the league we chatted candidly with Harrison recently as part of our ‘Dial Up’ series.

If you hadn’t heard of Jack Harrison before this weekend it wouldn’t be the biggest surprise; the young Englishman was hardly a household name. But on the opening day of the 20/21 season he announced himself in the grandest way possible at the home of the new Premier League champions, as Leeds United made their long awaited return to the top flight. Plucking the ball out of the air, he deftly skipped past the PFA Young Player of last season followed by another young England international, splitting the best defence in the league before cooly rifling home past one of the world’s best goalkeepers. His first Premier League goal and the club's first goal in the top flight of English football for 16 years. The stuff dreams are made of.

But there’s more to this young man than just that worldie. In fact, his football journey actually started in Liverpool’s youth academy followed by seven years at Manchester United. Then came a switch to Sheffield. Sheffield, Massachusetts that is, as he and his mother decided on a switch to the States. He was then the #1 draft pick in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft and eventually found himself at New York City playing alongside the likes of Andrea Pirlo, David Villa and Frank Lampard. Not a bad trio to learn from. A year later and he was a Manchester City player. And now he’s embarking on his third season on loan with Leeds United, Marcelo Bielsa – one of the most well respected coaches in the game – clearly liking what he sees.

So it was a pleasure to find out more about the young Englishman-with-the-Pirlo-seal-of-approval as we talked with him about everything that’s happened so far, from the decision to leave Manchester United at the age of 14, to life in America, and making his Premier League bow.

I always wanted to make it as a professional, I always wanted to play in the Premier League, but I wasn’t exactly sure about how I was going to make it, I was just going through the motions, taking it step by step"
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The best part about [Pirlo, Lampard and Villa] is that they don’t think that they’re big time or anything like that. People say that they go to the MLS to retire and that they don’t care anymore and that’s just not the case; they were always trying to help me out and it was an honour to see how they conduct themselves. I learnt so much from that"
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Listen to the full interview with Jack Harrison on IGTV.