By George Overhill

17th Sep, 2022 | 9:10am

Leeds United want to keep all three of a trio of key players whose contracts have ticked inside the final two years, according to Phil Hay.

Star winger Jack Harrison and defenders Robin Koch and Pascal Struijk all currently have deals which expire in the summer of 2024, with the former attracting heavy transfer interest from Newcastle in the transfer window just gone.

But there looks to be little prospect of any leaving on the cheap at the end of the season because the club will aim to get them all signed to new contracts according to The Athletic’s Hay, who was clear what the Whites’ view of them is with all three starting every Premier League game this season.

On The Phil Hay Show on Friday (16 September, 30mins) he said: “They’ll want to keep all of them. I’m not sure it’s happened yet but I was expecting them to get into contract talks with Harrison as soon as the window closed.

“They are going to have to extend his deal otherwise they are going to be in a situation by the end of the season where he’s got 12 months left and in no way could they be asking for £40million from anybody.

“I noticed that Robin Koch had been left out of the Germany squad which I think will come as a bit of a surprise to him… because I think he’s probably played as well in this period as he has at any stage with Leeds.

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“But Struijk, again, they will want to keep Struijk without a doubt.”


Harrison needs to be worked on as a matter of priority since the club have had clear warning that he is a target within the Premier League.

Newcastle wanted to sign him for around £20million for weeks during the transfer window, and that is likely the kind of price that he would command should his deal reach its final 12 months.

Koch and Struijk are not of the same level but have played more minutes so far this season and at their age are clearly important members of the squad who have resale value at the very least.

To protect that if nothing else they will need to be extended and so the negotiations will need to get moving on three fronts very soon.

There is an outside chance that all three could be called up to the World Cup, although that seems fairly unlikely now for Harrison, and Koch has apparently moved backwards in the German pecking order, but the break would provide a good time to get talks moving.

The hierarchy must not let the same situation develop as did with Kalvin Phillips last season, where a new contract was virtually assumed during the early months but was allowed to drag on long enough that the situation changed and it never materialised.

The Yorkshire Pirlo might still be in the Whites line up rather than sitting on the Manchester City bench otherwise, or would have at least cost a lot more, so that lesson has to have been learned with Harrison above all, but time should be of the essence with all three.

In other Leeds United news, there has been no response from Marcelo Bielsa, leaving club plans in limbo.