Leeds United have been dealt a setback in their efforts to sign Ben Brereton Diaz this winter…
The Yorkshire giants have regularly been linked with a move for the Blackburn Rovers forward in recent windows, with claims earlier this month suggesting that a serious push to sign him would be made in January.
However, according to The Sun’s Alan Nixon, it’s going to take a massive offer for the Championship outfit to even consider letting him go, so that puts a big dent in their chances of sealing him.
“I don’t think he goes … unless offer is mad,” he tweeted.
Diaz is out of contract in the summer but the Lancashire side have an option to extend that by a further year. Meanwhile, a fee in the region of £20m has previously been mooted, as per the Mirror.
Historically, the January transfer window has not been one that Leeds often get involved in.
“The feeling in the club and in the recruitment department is generally that they would like to do as little business as they can in January,” once claimed The Athletic’s Phil Hay, whilst Marcelo Bielsa’s comments in the past have hinted towards there being a lack of activity.
The Argentina head coach also spent a lot of money in the summer, breaking Untied’s club record to sign Dan James, one of several £20m+ signings, so there are questions over how much of the budget is left for further additions next month,
However, Leeds need reinforcements as their injury list continues to pile up. They have missed the likes of vice-captain Luke Ayling and leading goalscorer Patrick Bamford for most of the season, without an adequate backup, whilst a fresh blow to Kalvin Phillips is certainly worrying.
Bamford returned from injury and suffered another setback, meaning he has played only 22 minutes in the top-flight since September, so it’s no wonder Bielsa has his sights set on a new frontline addition in Diaz.
Reports in Chile have previously suggested that the 66-year-old has been a huge fan of the Blackburn star, ever since the two sides met in the Championship for the first time several years ago, so he will be absolutely gutted to not be able to sign him this January, if Nixon’s claims are accurate.
The striker, dubbed a “beast” and an “extraordinary talent” by his manager Tony Mowbray, has been in electric form this campaign, where he has delivered 19 goals and one assist in 23 league games, via Transfermarkt.
Bamford’s only backup is academy gem Joe Gelhardt, so a move for one of the Championship’s most prolific goalscorers does make sense but it now seems unlikely given that Rovers will not sell him on the cheap, despite his contractual situation,
As such, Bielsa and co have been dealt a big blow in their attempts to bring in an alternative this winter. He will surely be devastated as his nightmare campaign at Elland Road looks set to continue.