Arnaud Kalimuendo: Christophe Galtier drops transfer hint amid claims Leeds are nearing big-money deal
PSG coach Christophe Galtier has dropped a further hint that young striker Arnaud Kalimuendo could be on the move this summer amid growing claims a transfer to Leeds United is on the cards.
Leeds have invested heavily this summer, with Jesse Marsch’s side spending close to £95m. However, the seven new signings they have brought in have been offset by the sales of star men, Raphinha and Kalvin Phillips. One signings that has aluded them so far, is a new big-name striker.
Marsch’s men need a new marksman to provide cover and competition for Patrick Bamford. The England cap saw his 2021/22 season destroyed by various injuries; the player appearing in just 560 Premier League minutes in total.
As such, it’s little wonder to see them scouring the market for a new goal-grabber.
As such, the Whites are keen on a deal for Kalimuendo, though his future looks complicated by a number of other factors. Indeed, while Leeds have held talks with PSG, TEAMtalk understands that Kalimuendo is not currently their first-choice target.
That honour currently falls upon Charles De Ketelaere, with Leeds having a giant offer on the table for the Belgium international. His first choice, however, remains on signing for Milan. However, as their wait to agree a fee continues, so too does Leeds’.
That said, a big twist in the saga appears to have given Leeds a strong chance of signing De Ketelaere.
Nonetheless, Leeds have pursued other options to which Kalimuendo is one.
The striker impressed during two seasons on loan with Lens. Indeed, the 20-year finished the 2021/22 campaign with 13 goals from 35 appearances.
Now back at PSG, he has been taken on their pre-season tour of Japan, where he has duly caught the eye.
Leeds agree fee for Arnaud Kalimuendo
Despite scoring in their pre-season matches against Urawa Reds and Kawasaki, talks have progressed swiftly between Leeds and PSG.
As such, TEAMtalk contributor Graeme Bailey has revealed the latest to the OneLeeds YouTube channel.
“The broad principle of the deal is agreed,” he said.
“As with a lot of these deals, agreeing a fee can sometimes be the easiest bit, all of these deals are very different. In Leeds’ case here, agreeing the terms with PSG isn’t the issue, but he’s come back from pre-season and performed very well.
“Christophe Galtier has come in and likes what he is seeing, he’s a very good player.
“Luis Campos, the sporting director, he was looking to move him on. It’s not off, it’s just purely stalled.”
Leeds’ hesitation appears to be purely based around the De Ketelaere situation. Were he to move to Milan, it seems a deal for Kalimuendo may well be sanctioned.
Providing an update from Japan of his situation, PSG coach Galtier is also now hinting a deal may be on the cards.
“I’m more than happy with him (Kalimuendo). He’s doing great but then there’s the market. We’ll see the club’s and the player’s decision.”
Could Leeds sign both Kalimuendo and De Ketelaere?
There is always the chance Leeds United could land both players this summer.
De Ketelaere remains their first choice with the striker more of an established star and having experience of playing in the Champions League.
Tipped as the next Kevin De Bruyne, De Ketelaere appears one player tipped for the top. And while he has played across the forward line, Leeds would see him as a central striker were they to land him.
Of course, they could sign Arnaud Kalimuendo too, who at 20, is yet to prove himself at the very top.
Leeds in battle for Charles De Ketelaere
Leeds are in a battle with AC Milan for Belgian youngster Charles De Ketelaere.
Despite his impressive pre-season, an exit does look on the cards. PSG recently signed Hugo Ekitike, adding him to their vast attacking options. Indeed, Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Mauro Icardi are also on their books. As a result, it’s hard to see where Kalimuendo will get a game were he to stay.
PSG could indeed sanction his sale, but demand a buy-back clause be placed in the deal.
One player whose future is up in the air is Jack Harrison. And Leeds may yet consider his sale to fund both transfers.
With TEAMtalk already revealing one bid has been rejected, reports claim they are now preparing a new, improved second bid for the winger.