Leeds United want to sign 'classy' Taylor Harwood-Bellis from Manchester City amid price update
Leeds United have joined the race to sign Manchester City defender Taylor Harwood-Bellis, with the champions refusing to lower their asking price, Alan Nixon reports.
The 21-year-old was a stand-out on loan at Burnley last season as the Clarets won promotion to the Premier League under Vincent Kompany, and then captained England under-21s to the European Championship trophy.
He is wanted by a host of clubs this summer, including West Ham, and Fulham, and now the Whites have thrown their hat into the ring.
Journalist Nixon reports on Patreon (30 July) that despite the youngster, who has yet to start in the Premier League for Pep Guardiola’s side, having a contract that expires next summer the treble winners are insisting on £15million to let him go.
And while a host of Premier League sides are interested in the “classy” defender Daniel Farke’s Leeds United are also now “keen”.
In light of Max Wober’s late departure to the Bundesliga the Whites boss needs reinforcements at the back, and preferably sooner rather than later.
Charlie Cresswell is likely to step up into a more important role after a year on loan at Millwall, assuming he stays past deadline day.
But a unit that was a regular weakness in the Premier League last term and has already lost Diego Llorente, Robin Koch and Rasmus Kristensen earlier in the window looks to be one of the priorities before 1 September first.
Harwood-Bellis would be a hugely impressive signing if Leeds United could pull it off ahead of the other interested parties.
He proved that he can be an important player in the Championship last season at Turf Moor, and his leading role on the international stage with the under-21s has only boosted his profile further.
It may seem steep to shell out £15m for a player unproven in the top flight with just a year left on his deal, and the spending power at Elland Road is in question currently.
But if top flight sides don’t want to take the plunge without more of a catalogue of Premier League work then it could have opened the door for Leeds when there aren’t the same doubts in the second tier.
He arguably has more upside that Liverpool’s Nat Phillips, who himself is expected to cost at least £10m, and the City youngster would be an impressive statement amid a transfer window that is leaving fans on edge.
In other Leeds United news, a former senior recruitment figure at Celtic has been appointed to help bring in new signings.