By Anthony Onifade

12th Sep, 2023 | 6:55pm

49ers Enterprises to make brutal Helder Costa call as expected Leeds United transfer exit still awaits

After days of several transfer talks regarding his future at Leeds United, Helder Costa still remains on the books at Elland Road and the 49ers Enterprises may be set to make a brutal call to quicken his exit.

The Angolan international, who spent last season on loan with Al-Ittihad informed Leeds boss Daniel Farke that he wanted to leave the club [LeedsLive, 7 September] with the Whites also long desiring the same outcome [Phil Hay, August 18].

Yorkshire Evening Post journalist Graham Smyth reported on 1 September that Costa could yet seal his move away from the club after over a week since the transfer window passed he is still yet to find a new club.

Although the Saudi transfer market closes on Thursday 7 September, the Qatari window is still open for business until 18 September which leaves Costa with over a week to seal his expected exit joining several first-team stars such as Luis Sinisterra, Marc Roca, Tyler Adams and Max Wober to have sought pastures new this summer.

Costa joined the ranks at Elland Road in a £15m switch from Wolves in 2020 [Transfermarkt] having spent the season before on loan with Marcelo Bielsa’s side, but hasn’t settled permanently in Yorkshire spending time on loan with both Valencia and Al-Ittihad.

LeedsLive reported on 7 September that Farke doesn’t see the Angolan as part of his first-team plans at Elland Road this season and that has been abundantly clear for a long while now, with Costa failing to establish himself at the club ever since Bielsa’s tenure.

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There doesn’t appear to have been much interest in the Algolan, though, after he scored just three goals in 18 appearances while on loan in the Saudi Pro League last season.

However, Costa certainly knows his time is up in West Yorkshire which means both he and his representatives will be working hours on end to seal any kind of move.

And the 49ers may have to make a brutal call on his situation in order to quicken the exit process.

Yorkshire Evening Post journalist Graham Smyth reported via Twitter on 7 September that a move to Saudi Arabia would have been “complicated” with the 29-year-old away with Angola’s national team ahead of the Saudi transfer deadline the same day.

Smyth went further on the “options remaining” for Costa’s exit strategy which include a move to Qatar, Russia or Turkey, but if one doesn’t “materialise” before the other windows close an agreement between the winger and the Whites should be reached to make him a free agent a year before his contract expires.

With no planned transfer exit in the process right now, it may well be the best plausible option for both parties, to come to a mutual agreement to terminate his contract and end this “complicated” and awkward situation right now.

The Whites are blessed with wide options this season, having kept the likes of Wilfried Gnonto and Crycensio Summerville despite plenty of interest in the summer transfer window, so it would take a huge amount of injuries before Farke even considered possibly picking Costa this season but even that looks impossible.

With a crucial Championship campaign on the horizon for Farke and his team, they simply cannot afford to have room for players who aren’t in the right frame of mind to compete or have the heads on potential exits as it could completely derail morale and squad togetherness.

It is why Costa must be given his inevitable exit route and if that can’t be secured in the next few days, Leeds United must simply drag him out by terminating his contract. It may seem brutal, even to the Whites’ finances but it is the best solution for all parties involved.

In other Leeds United news, Farke may spring a tactical surprise against Millwall on Sunday 17 September after a recent Elland Road injury blow.