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West Ham could lose Harrison Ashby to Leeds United

Leeds United are reportedly planning a January swoop for West Ham defender Harrison Ashby and it could be a disastrous decision by the Hammers to sell him.

According to Alan Nixon, both Leeds and Newcastle United were keen on signing the 20-year-old on deadline day, with only an injury to Ben Johnson preventing the Hammers from cashing in.

Could Ashby be Rio Ferdinand 2.0?

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Yes

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Leeds are also expected to return for Ashby in the next transfer window but Nixon claims that West Ham are attempting to get him signed onto a new deal, although he has previously stalled on agreeing to new terms in the past.

During his time at West Ham, Ashby has made just six first-team appearances but caught the eye in the Premier League 2 last season, contributing two goals and five assists in 21 outings.

Journalist Sam Delaney was full of praise for Ashby on the U Irons Podcast in 2020.

He said: “He’s big as well. He’s like a big unit. He’s only young, but he’s like a giant. Usually, you’re used to seeing smaller players in those wing-back positions, but he looked big, strong, he was very fearless, decent on the ball.”

Should Ashby complete a move to Elland Road in January, it could be a repeat of the deal that saw Rio Ferdinand depart the club in 2000.

The Hammers academy graduate swapped London for Yorkshire in 2000 for a then British record fee of £18m and he was a huge success with both Leeds and later Manchester United, establishing himself as one of the top defenders of the Premier League era. He made 81 appearances for England and it’s safe to say that West Ham should have kept him around for longer.

While it is impossible to predict whether or not Ashby’s career will be anywhere near Ferdinand’s, you worry that selling the rarely-seen youngster having given him very few opportunities could prove to be a big mistake in a few years’ time.

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West Ham United manager David Moyes applauds the fans

How many points did West Ham end the Premier League season with?

Therefore, West Ham will be hoping to tie down the Scottish prodigy to a new deal, otherwise, they could be facing another Ferdinand-like howler in January if Leeds come knocking again.

Article title: West Ham could lose Harrison Ashby to Leeds United

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