Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Leeds given striker signing hope as selling side’s manager drops £20m hint

Ben Brereton Diaz, Blackburn goal celeb during EFL match against Derby County

Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray admits he won’t be able to stand in Ben Brereton Diaz’s way if a sizeable offer arrives for the striker, amid claims Leeds United are preparing a January swoop.

The 22-year-old striker has 17 goals to his name so far this season with Rovers now up to fourth in the Championship table. Indeed, their 2-0 win at fellow promotion hopefuls Bournemouth saw the Chile international put in another inspired display.

As such, it’s no surprise to see Brereton Diaz linked with a move higher up the English ladder. He has been strongly linked with a £20m move to Brighton in January, with Graham Potter’s side looking to be more clinical in attack.

Indeed, as per a report last week, Brighton’s pursuit has been aided by their good relations with Blackburn. Youngsters Reda Khadra and Jan Paul van Hecke have been sent from the south coast to Ewood Park on loan this season.

However, Leeds are now being strongly linked with Brereton Diaz once again. United boss Marcelo Bielsa has a long-standing interest in the forward and reportedly deployed a scout to keep tabs on his performances for Chile over the summer.

Now, The Sun reports their interest in him is gathering momentum as they look for more cover and competition for Patrick Bamford.

United’s star striker has been sidelined for much of the season with an ankle injury. He did return to action recently, scoring when coming off the bench against Brentford.

However, he pulled a hamstring while wildly celebarating his injury-time notch and now faces a further spell out.

Mowbray hints at sale

Now Rovers boss Mowbray suggests they won’t stand in Brereton Diaz’s way if a sizeable offer is made in January.

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He said: “The club will decide, the owners will decide. The owners’ business has suffered a bit in India and Ben Brereton Diaz is doing amazingly well.

“I was a footballer for 20 years and when you are doing well sometimes you have to strike. If he can get a top, top move and earn the money in the Premier League and be a Premier League striker I would never stop him doing that.

“I would hope he stays with us and sees the season out at the very least and keeps the goals coming.”

Mowbray on Ben Brereton Diaz development

The Stoke-on-Trent born attacker moved to Ewood Park back in 2018 from Nottingham Forest, initial on loan.

Some fans were sceptial about the fee they paid for him at the time. However, after his best season to date, Brereton Diaz is improving all the time.

“I’m just delighted for Ben,” Mowbray added. “He’s a lad we signed at 18 and he’s only 22 now. He’s taken a bit of flak over those years, as we spent £6million on him from Nottingham Forest. But now, he has come to fruition.

“He is a man, he has grown up. He now feels as if he can use his body and he knows how to score goals.

“Let’s see what January brings. I hope he’s not in a rush to leave the club, he’s not intimated that at the moment. That said, every single player has their price.”

Brereton Diaz, who qualifies to play for Chile through his mother, has three goals in nine appearances at international level.

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