According to Football Insider, Leeds United have joined the race to sign Derby County starlet Jason Knight.
The 19-year-old has been an ever-present for the Championship side this season, playing in every single game for the club – in fact, the versatile midfielder has failed to complete the full 90 minutes in just three out of the 24 matches he’s played.
Now, Football Insider claim that Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds have Knight on their radar this month, although a summer move for the teenager may be the more likely.
The report further adds that Premier League sides West Ham and Burnley have been linked with an interest in Knight too.
At just 19, Knight is building up considerable experience by starting week-in and week-out at Pride Park, and it appears he’s also got the mentality to really make it to the top of the game.
His first-team coach at Derby, Justin Walker, described him as an “ultimate winner”, adding: “There’s 100 per cent a bit of Roy Keane in him. I started at Forest as a young kid so I had the first-hand experience of Roy. I watched him develop at a similar age to Jason when he stepped into Forest’s team. It’s not a lazy comparison, there are some comps in there. But it comes down to self-drive and motivation.”
Knight’s versatility is something that will be deeply appealing to Bielsa, who’s shown his coaching ability to develop players into real stars in positions that may not be initially considered their favourite or strongest.
In Knight, he’s got someone who he can really take under his wing and mould, and with the kind of rave reviews he’s earned about his mentality, it doesn’t seem as though a step up to the Premier League would faze the young midfielder.
If Orta can clinch a deal for him in this January transfer window, then it would give that Leeds midfield a real shot in the arm heading into the second-half of the Premier League campaign.