By Pranav Shahaney

23rd Jul, 2021 | 2:10pm

Crystal Palace are favourites to sign Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher - Nixon

Leeds United have made an approach to sign Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher on loan this summer, according to The Athletic.

The Whites are looking to bolster their options in the middle of the park after Pablo Hernandez’s departure and have identified the Englishman as one of their transfer targets.

There’s also an interest from fellow Premier League side Crystal Palace, and Sun journalist Alan Nixon has suggests that they are favourites to sign the player.

Via his personal Twitter account he wrote, “Palace have been in for him for some time. To be fair Leeds have too, but would fancy Palace chances.”

Battle on our hands

Gallagher is the ideal player we need who would seamlessly slot into our midfield and instantly strengthen our first team.

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His versatility is likely to be one of the main reasons why the Whites are pursuing his services.

Last season, he was on loan at West Brom and despite the Baggies facing relegation, he was one of their standout performers.

He’s capable of playing as a deep-lying playmaker or 6 as well as in a more advanced midfield role as a number 8.

Ahead of West Brom’s game against Crystal Palace, then Palace boss Roy Hodgson waxed his lyrical.

Per Football.London he said, “Conor Gallagher was there even when we played them in the first game of the season.

“He’s a player that I’ve admired for a long time, so I thought then ‘that’s a tremendous signing that you’ve made there.”

Gallagher is technical on the ball and is also pretty influential off it – tirelessly leading the press for his side and often running the full length of the field to win back the ball.

Chelsea rate him pretty highly which is why a loan move seems the most likely option.

We don’t have a problem as it will involve a very small loan fee and would mean we have funds to strengthen in other areas of the field.

In other Leeds United news, ‘Brilliant’, ‘Maestro’ – Leeds Super Fans blown away by major transfer update