By Max Parsons

5th Nov, 2021 | 12:32pm

Leeds United could attempt to tie Luke Ayling down to new contract this winter

Leeds United could try and tie Luke Ayling down with a contract extension this January, with the defender’s current deal set to expire in 18 months, according to LeedsLive.

The 30-year-old has been absent since September and has been a big miss for the Whites’ previous five Premier League fixtures.

Ayling has been at Leeds since the summer of 2016 and has racked up 198 appearances for the Whites, firmly establishing himself as a hallmark of the blisteringly intense style we know associate with the club.

Despite still having 18 months on his current contract, Leeds Live report that the club could attempt to secure his services for the future now, so as to ward off any potential suitors as his deal runs down.

The report also suggests that Leeds are confident of keeping the 30-year-old at the club for the majority of his remaining years in football, given his love for the Whites.

Fan favourite

It’s safe to say that everyone would love to see Ayling put pen to paper on a new deal at Elland Road.

The defender has been a loyal servant to the club and helped make the step up to the top flight look seamless last campaign. His ability to adapt to Bielsa’s ruthlessly demanding style of play has been impressive, as has the level he’s maintained since the Argentine’s arrival.

Throughout the 2020/21 season, Ayling missed just 20 minutes of league action, captaining the Whites in 12 of his 38 Premier League outings. This campaign his fortunes changed when he picked up a knee injury, although his importance to the club is undeniable.

Even at 30, a long-term contract extension doesn’t look like a risk, given his usual ability to stay healthy and his sheer athleticism and consistency when he is fit and playing.

January reinforcements will be necessary in order to strengthen Bielsa’s squad and battle out of the relegation scrap the Whites currently find themselves in. That is evident.

One bit of business that is just as important, however, is tying down crucial players and key members of the dressing room – Ayling is just that.

In other Leeds United news, Pablo Hernandez has been impressed by Helder Costa’s performances at Valencia this season.