By Mark Smith

23rd Jun, 2022 | 6:10pm

Phil Hay responds to Charles De Ketelaere links with Leeds United as Victor Orta spotted at airport

Phil Hay has responded to reports linking Leeds United with a move for Club Brugge star Charles De Ketelaere this week after Victor Orta was seen jetting out of England.

The Athletic journalist insisted that those kinds of big money moves would only happen, and are being lined up, in case the likes of Raphinha move on from Elland Road.

This type of analysis is seen as an attempt to prepare in the background for what might be coming around the corner in West Yorkshire with many clubs circling.

Speaking on the Phil Hay Show, host Dan Moylan started the segment after images emerged on social media in the past week of Orta doing his thing.

“One of the things we love about the summer, is when we get photos of Victor Orta at various airports flying here, there and everywhere,” he said.

“This emerged last week that he was on his way to Belgium, and then low and behold, we were linked with Charles De Ketelaere.”

Hay responded to the links in the past 24 hours, and made it clear that these kind of moves are being lined up solely for if the likes of Raphinha leave for big money.

“It’s a little bit of a holding pattern here,” he said. “As with the central midfielders, they will come into play and the shortlist will come into play if Phillips goes.

“Likewise, with the wingers, they are being lined up and being looked at, analysed with the view to moving if and when Raphinha goes. It is that attempt to prepare in the background for what might be coming in the near or more distant future.”

Wow.

Now, this would be a huge move if pulled off.

Fabrizio Romano shared the initial links on Thursday morning [23 June], also admitting that Cody Gakpo at PSV Eindhoven is also on the potential list of replacements.

Hay shared that moves are already being lined up back that up, and Orta could be ready to ease the pain of Raphinha leaving with a huge blockbuster move of his own.

Leeds fans are everywhere, and when the image of Orta at the airport, supposedly on the way to Belgium arose, it was no surprise, but that has now been backed up with the links to the Belgian wonder at Brugge.

It has been reported by Gabriel Sans in recent hours that Leeds are now considering a £60million bid for Raphinha, so should that be accepted, these lined-up moves may happen much sooner than we think.

Orta is not messing around this summer, and these huge transfer raids could continue here.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites now want to sign this striker with a rival set to kickstart a major £30million+ transfer battle