NY Times journalist moots potential Leeds pursuit of relegated trio, one reportedly valued £35m
NY Times journalist Rory Smith has speculated about which players Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa was watching at Goodison Park on Sunday.
Bielsa was spotted watching Bournemouth’s 3-1 win against Everton on the final day of the Premier League season.
Although Eddie Howe’s side won, they were relegated from the Premier League and Bielsa could be one of the first vultures to circle around the south coast club’s most highly-rated stars.
According to Smith, Nathan Ake, David Brooks and Josh King might be three players who Bielsa wanted to keep tabs on in person.
“Who do you look at in that Bournemouth team and think, ‘they’re the players they sell to rebuild?’,” Smith said on the BBC’s Football Daily podcast.
“There’s Ake, there’s David Brooks and King. I think [Callum] Wilson’s value’s dropped a little bit, but Josh King… I know that Bielsa was there watching at Goodison Park [on Sunday] and you wonder if those are the three that they’re looking at.
“Bournemouth have not really got a vast amount to show for their five years in the Premier League, other than lots of lovely memories, which are very important, and a fairly big wage bill.”
If there is one of those three players who we would love to see Leeds sign, it’s Ake.
With Ben White’s loan spell at Elland Road coming to an end and Gaetano Berardi suffering a major injury setback, Bielsa is going to have to sign at least two new centre-backs.
Ake is a very solid centre-back.
The 25-year-old has 146 Premier League appearances to his name, as well as 11 caps for the Netherlands.
One issue is that he reportedly has a £35million price-tag, according to talkSPORT.
Manchester City are also said to be pursuing the Dutch international, which is a blow for Leeds because City can outbid almost any team in the world to sign players.
Ake’s a top-class centre-back who will more than replace White so we can see why Bielsa would’ve wanted to watch him at the weekend.
Unfortunately, he might be out of Leeds’ grasp.
In other Leeds United news, Sky Sports have issued an update on Ben White’s future.