Andrea Radrizzani has a decision to make.
Does he gamble and put everything on the line in trying to get Leeds over the line and back into the Premier League this season by spending big? Or does he cross his fingers and hope that the players he’s already got can seal the deal?
It seems that he’s already made his mind up as The Athletic’s most recent report on the Whites’ plans this month states that the Whites are ready to meet Southampton’s demands for the signing of Che Adams.
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The Saints want an initial loan fee of £1m alongside an obligation to buy him for at least £10m in the summer.
A striker who netted 22 goals for Birmingham City last term could certainly help Leeds get promoted, but if they don’t go up the club’s long-term future would be in trouble.
Leeds are already close to the line when it comes to FFP, and if they agreed to this move their situation would get a whole lot worse this summer.
FFP allows Championship sides a loss of £39m over a three year period.
Purely based on transfer fees, Leeds have a net profit of around £13m during that period according to Transfermarkt, yet they’re still cutting it fine in terms of FFP due to their wage bill and other factors.
That net profit will increase to around £23m this summer as their net spend of around £10m from the 2017/18 season will be struck off. However, it won’t remain that way for very long.
Helder Costa is set to sign permanently for £15m this summer, so not only will Leeds be back at square one, they’ll also be £5m worse off in terms of their net expenditure on transfers, and that increases to at least £16m if Adams is signed for the initial loan fee and then a minimum £10m outlay.
If Leeds aren’t promoted they will have to either sell players or face sanctions, and with Phil Hay predicting that Marcelo Bielsa will leave if United don’t go up they could be in serious trouble both on and off the pitch.