Leeds United forward Daniel James is attracting increasing interest ahead of the summer transfer window.
That’s according to a report by Italian media outlet Calcio Atalanta (via Sport Witness), who claimed that Atalanta have made contact with the Whites winger regarding the potential for a switch to the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia this summer.
The report added that, should Leeds suffer relegation on the final day of the Premier League campaign this weekend, the 24-year-old would be available at a lower price than if Jesse Marsch’s outfit remain in the top flight – something which could benefit the Serie A club in negotiations.
While James has shown flashes of potential since his £25m move to Elland Road last summer – such as his brace in a 3-3 draw against Aston Villa – generally speaking the Wales international has failed to live up to the expectations which naturally come with such a big-money move.
Indeed, over his 34 Premier League appearances this season, the £16.2m-rated forward has been in very inconsistent form, scoring four goals, providing four assists and missing eight big chances, in addition to completing just 9.9 passes, giving away the ball 9.4 times and winning a mere 2.9 duels (at a success rate of 39%) per game.
These returns have seen the £50k-per-week winger – who Chris Sutton dubbed “pathetic” and Kevin Phillips claimed is “papering over the cracks” of Patrick Bamford’s injury – average a disappointing SofaScore match rating of 6.64, ranking the former Manchester United attacker as Jesse Marsch’s ninth-worst performer in the English top flight this term.
As such, should Atalanta go on to submit an offer anywhere near the Welshman’s current market valuation, it would appear a wise move for Victor Orta to cash in on the 24-year-old while he has the chance. It is clear to see from the Whites’ current 18th-place standing in the Premier League table, and the aforementioned performance figures, that James has been a rather costly mistake for the club.