Tying Jack Harrison down to a new Leeds United deal is quickly becoming a priority after a report claimed Newcastle are not along in chasing his signature.
The 25-year-old started the new campaign in blistering form, registering three assists and one goal in his first three outings. His form has tailed off to some degree since then, though Harrison remains one of Jesse Marsch’s most trusted lieutenants.
Indeed, according to WhoScored, Harrison boasts the highest average statistical rating of English players not included in Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad.
The stats website ranked the top 10 based on players who are in with a realistic shout of making the squad for Qatar.
Harrison led the way with an average rating of 7.28, ahead of Marcus Rashford in second with 7.16.
The lively winger is near-certain to miss out on Qatar. However, that will be to Leeds’ benefit who will have a rested Harrison raring to go in the second half of the season.
That may leave Newcastle with a sense of regret after seeing two bids to sign Harrison knocked back in the summer.
The Athletic reported the latter totalled north of £20m, though that fell well below Leeds’ valuation. Indeed, Sky Sports’ Lyall Thomas later reported the Whites value Harrison around the £60m mark.
But according to a new report from 90min, Newcastle aren’t content to move on just yet.
Jack Harrison interest sparks Leeds response
They report the Magpies ‘remain interested’ in forging a deal after failing to land any new wingers this summer.
Several other unnamed Premier League sides are also reportedly monitoring Harrison’s situation, something that is prompting a response from Leeds.
The forward’s current contract at Elland Road expires in the summer of 2024. With less than two years remaining, the time is fast approaching for Leeds to make a decision.
90min state Leeds hope to tie Harrison down to an extension before 2022 is out. What’s more, doing just that has quickly becoming a ‘priority’.
To aid their cause, it’s suggested Harrison will be in line for a hefty wage increase. While no figures are stated, the report terms the situation as Leeds being ‘ready to pay him his worth as one of the club’s top players.’
Harrison unlikely to leave
Leeds have plenty of options in the final third despite the exits of Raphinha and Daniel James.
Joe Gelhardt is developing nicely and competes with Patrick Bamford up front. Luis Sinsisterra already looks a shrewd signing, while Brenden Aaronson has impressed either on the right or in central areas.
Rodrigo started the season like a house on fire and is finally justifying his £27m price tag.
Crysencio Summerville has been the biggest benefactor of James’ loan to Fulham, with the Dutchman getting 30 minutes off the bench last time out against Brentford.
Youngsters Sam Greenwood and Wilfried Gnonto are also waiting in the wings, and that’s before we’ve even got to Harrison.
Yet despite the upheaval, Harrison remains the one constant in Leeds’ front line. The left wing position is his own and barring an eye-watering offer, Leeds will not entertain a sale.
Given he’ll be well compensated for penning fresh terms too, all the signs points towards a lengthy stay.