Leeds were ultimately unable to hold onto the star man and top scorer of last term’s in the shape of Ross McCormack, as relegated top tier side Fulham flexed their financial muscles to pay £11m for his signature.
With 67% of the Yorkshire side’s goals having come from the Scot last season, his influence will be missed, and a replacement will likely be coming through the Elland Road doors in the not too distant future.
Here are six players who may be snapped up…
23 goals in League One has seen Assombalonga attract Premier League interest in recent times, but the big step to the top tier is unlikely to be on the cards just yet. Play-off defeat may be enough to convince the 21-year-old to look for pastures new, and Leeds might well be able to offer him the level of ambition he would like.
Quick, strong and good in front of goal, the Zaire-born hit-man has the tools to be a top Championship forward.
With Leeds’ new-found Italian connections, it would be no surprise to see the club head to the country to snap up a fresh striker. One man to have earned rave reviews in Serie B has been Pavoletti, who is firmly in his peak at the age of 25.
With 24 goals in just 36 appearances last season, Pavoletti looks to have the touch of class in front of goal, and would surely be available for a fraction of £11m McCormack fee.
Maybe an outsider, but Manchester city’s Guidetti is one to consider. Since rising to prominence a few seasons ago with a loan move at Feyenoord, the big Swede has struggled to get game time and to make a major impact.
A loan move to Stoke for the end of last term ended in disappointment, which would suggest that he’s not quite ready for the big time yet. A switch down to the Championship may give him the platform needed to gain some confidence and get himself in the shop window.
League Two to the Championship may be a bit of a leap, but with 23 goals to his name in the fourth tier, Winnall could have what it takes. The 23-year-old Scunthorpe man was in great form last season, and would surely be tempted by a big move to prove himself to Wolves – who sent him out on a series of loan moves before sanctioning his exit last year.
Ol’ AJ may have only managed 10 outings for play-off winners QPR last term, but if he could be kept fit he still has some life left at the age of 33. The former Crystal Palace and Everton hit-man is now a free agent after the jump to the top tier was deemed to large for him nowadays, so another year in the Championship and one last push to get back to the big time may be an option for him.
Another released forward knocking round is Ameobi, The Nigerian was a part of the furniture at St James Park, notching over 300 first-team outings since his debut in 2000. The 32-year-old is likely to be ready to stay in English football, with the Championship a genuine option for him. Leeds could use his experience, and his technical abilities may well be more visible outside of the Premier League.