By Craig Scott

22nd Sep, 2022 | 8:55am

Victor Orta among strong contenders for Chelsea job with Leeds United exit on the cards

Victor Orta is on a “long list” of names Chelsea are looking at with the Leeds United chief lined up for the sports director job at Stamford Bridge, according to Dean Jones.

The former Eurosport and Bleacher Report journalist, who now works with GiveMeSport, claims that while Orta is on Chelsea’s radar, there are other “strong contenders” in the running for the job after a failed attempt to hire Red Bull Salzburg’s Christoph Freund.

Orta has been Leeds’ director of football since 2017 and his work at Elland Road has attracted attention from Chelsea.

“I’m told he is on their long list as they seek to make sure they get the right man involved to help implement the long-term strategy. There are still some other strong contenders,” Jones told GiveMeSport.

Time ot move on?

Has Orta taken Leeds as far as he can as the director of football?

Or is he only just getting started?

When he first arrived at Leeds in 2017, it’s fair to say that his recruitment was a mess with a whole host of new players signed with almost all of them being flops.

Pawel Cibicki, Pierre-Michel Lasogga, Felix Wiedwald and Jay-Roy Grot were among those brought in during Orta’s first transfer window at Leeds. However, there was also Mateusz Klich, Ezgjan Alioski and Samuel Saiz.

Hiring Thomas Christensen and Paul Heckingbottom were regrettable decisions by the Spaniard, who eventually persuaded Marcelo Bielsa to head to Elland Road and the rest is history.

Bielsa’s pickiness when it came to transfers did Orta a favour. Long gone were the days of scatter gunning, signing a Laurens De Bock, Ouasim Bouy and Vurnon Anita to stumble over the odd gem in a Klich or an Alioski.

Instead, he was more measured and that approach has remained with Jesse Marsch at the helm now with players only being signed because they’ve been absolutely needed and because they show huge promise.

Can Orta do any better than he’s currently doing? We’ll need to see how this latest batch of recruits develops first but the man who brought in Bielsa, Raphinha, Patrick Bamford, Illan Meslier, Jack Harrison, Robin Koch, Brenden Aaronson, Joe Gelhardt, Crysensio Summerville and Luis Sinisterra deserves a lot more respect than he currently gets from fans.

In other Leeds United news, the Whites want to sign this “extraordinary” African international next year.