Collapsed Bamba Dieng deal was a blessing in disguise for Leeds United and Wilfried Gnonto
Bamba Dieng was close to completing a £10million move to Leeds United in the summer, but the move dramatically collapsed late into Deadline Day.
After the pursuit of Cody Gakpo fell flat, Leeds United turned their attention towards Olympic Marseille striker Bamba Dieng as their top target on Deadline Day.
However, despite the clubs meeting a £10million agreement [Sky Sports], a late twist in the tale saw Dieng instead jet off to Nice only to fail his medical and remain in Marseille.
It was a typically dramatic saga fit for the Deadline Day headlines, and the final twist of the tale came when Leeds desperately turned towards FC Zurich’s Wilfried Gnonto who eventually signed for £3.8million. [Daily Mail]
Victor Orta was forced to scramble around for an available striker or risk facing the wrath of Jesse Marsch after the American droned on about the need for a new forward over the summer.
At the time, Gnonto was considered a signing for the future and someone who wasn’t yet ready to compete with Patrick Bamford in the first team. However, the 18-year-old Italian quickly started drawing attention to himself in training and youth games, and before he knew it he was stepping foot on the hallowed turf of Elland Road.
He had a huge impact in the recent wins against Liverpool and Bournemouth – coming off the bench in both matches and setting up late goals to seal all three points.
There’s no way of telling how good or bad Dieng may have been for Leeds, but ironically his collapsed deal has made way for Gnonto’s incredible arrival – who with each passing week looks to be a really promising talent.
Orta will be breathing huge sighs of relief at his Gnonto signing working out, but the club can’t always rely on their third-choice target becoming a star.
There are definitely some lessons to be learned from the Dieng deal, and hopefully Orta and the board took note.
In other Leeds United news, Darko Gyabi could make his debut v Wolves in the Carabao Cup