By Craig Scott

20th Aug, 2022 | 11:10am

Phil Hay shares update on Leeds United bid to sign Wilfried Gnonto amid £8.4m development at Zurich

Zurich are pricing clubs out of signing Wilfried Gnoto this summer amid interest from Leeds United, according to The Athletic journalist Phil Hay.

Jesse Marsch confirmed in a press conference, via LeedsLive, on Friday (19 August) that the 18-year-old striker is a player he’s aware of and likes the look of but isn’t someone deemed as being ready for the Premier League just yet.

Gazzetta dello Sport reported on 17 August that Leeds have made a bid for the Italy international but it falls short of Zurich’s £8.4million valuation.

The Athletic’s Hay says that Leeds aren’t the only team keen on Gnoto and that Zurich are also pricing them out a move considering the Italian’s deal is up next year.

“When Marsch was asked about that, he said, ‘I don’t think he’s Premier League ready’. And he did actually say himself, ‘I don’t know if it’ll be in this window’,” said Hay on the latest episode of The Phil Hay Show podcast (19 August).

“Gnonto is out of contract at the end of this season.

“All the clubs looking at him or are interested in him seem to feel that Zurich’s asking price is too high.

“They don’t want to spend too much on him so nothing has really moved on that front.

“But in any case, that doesn’t seem as if that is going to be the one – even if he arrives this window – he’s not going to fill the gap.

“It sounds like he’d be a development player, similar to guys like Sonny Perkins, [Darko] Gyabi and the ones who went out on loan.”

Record-breaker

It’s no surprise to see that other clubs are interested in Gnonto.

He’s an 18-year-old Italy international who won the Swiss Super League title last season and is out of contract next year.

Half of Europe are probably chasing the teenager’s signature.

He became Italy’s youngest-ever goalscorer in June with a Nations League goal against Germany and is bound to continue playing for Roberto Mancini’s side in the future after doing so well earlier this summer.

Zurich are the Swiss champions but have started this season terribly by dropping out of the Champions League and failing to win any of their opening five league games.

If they’d done better in those games then they might have been more receptive towards selling Gnonto but it looks like they’re going to dig their heels in and make clubs pay a lot of money for someone who could be up for grabs for free next year.

Leeds need to be careful that doesn’t happen so if they want Gnonto badly, they’ll need to get a good bid in this summer or agree something that sees them sign him now and gets loaned back for the season.

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