By Saikat Mandal

20th Jul, 2022 | 4:40pm

Paolo Maldini jets off to Belgium to secure deal for Leeds United target Charles De Ketelaere

AC Milan are “inching closer” to securing a deal for Charles De Ketelaere, but Leeds United still stay on the hunt, as per 90 Min.

The website reported on 20 July Milan technical director Paolo Maldini has jetted off to Belgium to secure the deal for the highly-rated Belgium talent.

The report adds that Club Brugge are holding for a fee of around £30m for the attacking midfielder. Leeds are “ready to meet these demands”, provided Milan back out of the race.

Hope against hope

It seems Milan are just a few steps away from reaching an agreement with Club Brugge.

The Belgium club will probably accept an offer from Milan which is slightly below their asking price. However, it would be still a very good deal for the club.

Leeds are ready. They have money burning in their pocket following the departure of Raphinha, and they can easily match Brugge’s asking price.

They can easily match the player’s demands, and it won’t be a problem for Victor Orta to get the contracts ready immediately.

However, it all seems meaningless as the player himself doesn’t want to move to Elland Road.

He is fixated on joining San Siro, and in that case, the Whites can do nothing except hope that the deal with Milan doesn’t go through. It’s hope against hope.

De Ketelaere enjoyed a fantastic 2021-22 campaign, and he would have been a brilliant addition for the club.

Leeds have enjoyed an excellent transfer window thus far, but they’re not done yet.

As it stands, the club should not waste time here, rather they should look for options elsewhere.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites can sign this “excellent” left-back for £20million.