It is no secret that Leeds United have been strongly linked with a move for Middlesbrough defender Daniel Ayala.

The Daily Star did report that the Whites are interested in a move for the 29-year-old once his contract expires, but Phil Hay did label that unlikely.

There has been controversy in the restart of the Championship, with certain players refusing to play in case an injury ends their wishes of a summer exit – take Lyle Taylor for example.

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Well, you can now add Ayala to that list. The Daily Mail has reported that the experienced defender has rejected a new deal at the Riverside.

In rejecting those fresh terms, Jonathan Woodgate’s main defender has informed the club that he will not feature for the final nine games.

The newspaper has suggested that Ayala now has his eyes set on a lucrative move to Elland Road in the summer.

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Looking towards next season, the heart of defence will certainly be one area that needs to be addressed by Marcelo Bielsa and Victor Orta.

Ben White’s loan deal comes to an end and Gaetano Berardi is out of contract at the club once the campaign eventually finishes.

Andrea Radrizzani has already confirmed that he will be placing a substantial offer to Brighton for the impressive White, and Berardi has yet to comment seriously on his future.

Should the Swiss enforcer leave, bringing in an experienced option such as Ayala on a free-deal would definitely be an inspired piece of business.

When you compare Ayala to Berardi, it would be a smart replacement. The 29-year-old has completed more tackles, interceptions, clearances and blocks – not bad [WhoScored].

In other Leeds United news, the Whites have delivered streaming information for the final nine games of the season


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