By Mark Smith

19th Apr, 2023 | 5:10pm

Manuel Ugarte takes fancy of Victor Orta in Leeds United transfer news

Leeds United have made contact with the representatives of Sporting CP midfielder Manuel Ugarte ahead of the summer already, according to Record.

The Portuguese newspaper shared in its print edition [19 April, pg 11] that the Uruguayan international has whet the appetite of Victor Orta ahead of a potential transfer.

Any move is, of course, dependent on Leeds staying in the Premier League with inquiries made as Spurs and Newcastle also watch developments from afar.

They wrote: “Specifically with regard to the Uruguayan midfielder, Ugarte has aroused covetousness in England by Tottenham and Newcastle but, Record has found, there is now a third club from His Majesty’s land to gain strength in the race, in this case Leeds.

“The Yorkshire emblem has the midfielder referenced for some time – he was identified by scouting still at Fénix–, but his evolution in a European context, at Sporting, whetted Victor Orta’s appetite,

“Leeds sporting director who appreciates Manu’s qualities In this sense, in addition to having placed Ugarte on the list of targets for the summer, the British emblem has already made inquiries with the player’s representatives.”

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One to Watch.

The midfield right now is Leeds’ biggest issue.

Marc Roca and Weston McKennie have been absolutely destroyed against both Liverpool and Crystal Palace, being walked past with ease on every single attack, gifting goals away.

Of course, that changes with Tyler Adams in there but with his injury and the potential for a move away from West Yorkshire this summer, something has to change.

Ugarte could follow the path of Joao Palhinha to the Premier League from Sporting CP this summer, and the Portuguese man has been sensational for Fulham, who we meet this weekend.

The 22-year-old averages nearly four tackles per game right now [3.9], with 1.7 interceptions on top of that as well, nearly double the number that Roca manages [2.2], according to WhoScored.

This would be a sensational signing, but right now, surviving in the Premier League must come first, however unlikely that looks with how we are playing at the moment.

In other Leeds United news, Gary Neville has taken a swipe at Andrea Radrizzani after a £270m development emerged at Elland Road.