Leeds United have been handed a boost in their chase for Blackburn Rovers forward Ben Brereton Diaz.
According to Chilean publication, Red Gol, Marcelo Bielsa was interested in signing Brereton this summer, and reports in recent days and weeks have suggested that is still the case now ahead of the January transfer window.
Now, Rovers manager Tony Mowbray has delivered an update on the situation and admitted that Brereton could leave the club in the near future.
He said: “The club will decide. The owners will decide what they want to do, their business in India has suffered a little bit.
“If he can get a top, top move, earn the money and be a Premier League striker I’d never stop him doing that but I would hope he stays with us and sees the season out at the very least and keep the goals coming of course.”
Able to play as a number nine, but also out wide on both flanks, Brereton enjoyed his most prolific campaign to date in the Championship with Blackburn last season, bagging seven goals and providing five assists in 40 league games.
Those are the sort of numbers that would be richly welcomed at Leeds and given the exciting nature of Raphinha, they could stir up quite the combination in offensive areas at Elland Road.
Dubbed a “wonderful talent“, Rovers boss Mowbray, said: “Brereton’s like a beast now, and he can score goals. I see it every day in training. He’s a brilliant lad and all our lads absolutely love him. He’s filled out now and he will work so hard for this team. He’s very gifted and can score goals.”
Meanwhile, Brereton’s Chilean compatriot, Carlos Villanueva, said: “He’s going to make a good contribution to the national team, especially in a position where we had been looking for variants years ago.
“There has always been talk of that spare 9 and he gives you different characteristics… He comes from a football much more physical than the South American. He also has Chilean and South American blood, which puts in and fights.”
The £9m-rated attacker sounds exactly like the industrious player that Bielsa wants in his squad at Elland Road, and at just 22, is still nowhere near the prime years of his career.
Given the kind of struggles Leeds have endured this season in the Premier League, a move for Brereton might be the kind of momentum-starting signing that can fire the Yorkshire club up the table.
After all, Patrick Bamford’s absence is a continuous stumbling block with the England international missing a large portion of the campaign through injury. Brereton could help fix that issue, however, and armed with Raphinha at this side, a devastating duo would be formed to surely fire them to safety.