Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa could sign the club’s new Pontus Jansson in Celtic defender Jack Hendry.
Despite the signings of both Diego Llorente and Robin Koch last summer, it appears the Whites are keen on further reinforcing the centre of their defence ahead of the new Premier League campaign.
And, according to 90min, Hendry is someone who Bielsa’s side have scouted during the season, and a deal could be on the cards.
While Belgian side Oostende are set to trigger their option to sign Hendry on a permanent basis following his loan spell there, they will then look to sell him to the highest bidder, with Leeds name-checked as one of the sides potentially interested.
Standing at an imposing 6 foot 4, Hendry looks like he’s perfectly built for the Premier League in terms of his sheer size and presence, and could well be the kind of man to replace Jansson, who of course just helped Brentford seal promotion to the top-flight.
Just like the big Swede, Hendry is built like an absolute unit, and was pretty formidable defensively for Oostende last season, averaging an impressive 4.4 clearances and three aerial duels won per game – almost identical numbers to Jansson in the Championship, who managed 3.9 and 3.3 respectively.
Those performances saw Hendry named as the best player in the Belgium top flight last season, thriving in Alexander Blessin’s three-at-the-back formation – a fact that makes him absolutely perfect for Leeds and Bielsa given the Argentine’s use of the system in his time at Elland Road.
Speaking earlier this season, Oostende manager Blessin said: “He’s a great talker in defence. He makes the people he’s playing with better. You can see them listening to him. He’s been a tower of experience for us.
“Jack’s the most important member of the team this season and he’s one of the best defenders in the league. He can defend, he’s fast and he’s also a useful weapon at attacks because of his height.”
That leadership is something Leeds lost when Jansson parted ways with Leeds, but with Hendry’s arrival, it could see him become that vocal presence at the back, particularly if Bielsa decides to phase club captain Liam Cooper out.