Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Bargain fee revealed as Victor Orta prepares Leeds bid for South American midfield warrior

James Marshment
Nahitan Nandez, Cagliari midfielder in Serie A action at Hellas Verona

Leeds United are soon expected to launch an approach to sign long-time midfield target Nahitan Nandez, according to reports in Italy.

Nandez has been linked with a Premier League move for quite some time thanks to his form for Cagliari. He joined the Sardinian side in 2019 from Boca Juniors and quickly established himself in their team. So far, he has made 88 appearances for the club.

Indeed, he has been on Leeds’ radar for quite some time. They first were linked with a move during the summer. However, his then £23m asking price was more than United were prepared to pay.

Since then, the 49-times capped Uruguayan has seen his name mentioned with both Tottenham and West Ham. Indeed, Spurs were strongly linked with a move over the summer during Nuno Espirito Santo’s ill-fated reign.

Now under Conte’s charge, they appear to have their sights set elsewhere.

The Hammers, meanwhile, seemingly have other priorities with a new striker and a new defender of more urgent need.

And while Inter Milan are also being linked, their financial perils makes a deal for the Serie A champions difficult to strike.

And with Cagliari looking to sell their midfielder, reports in Italy claim it is Leeds who are ‘most likely’ to pounce.

Indeed, Tuttomercatoweb claims Leeds are likely to make their move for the player “soon”.

‘Leeds could soon make a proposal to Cagliari’, they report.

That’s in the wake of Cagliari reducing their asking price to Nandez – described in the media as a ‘midfielder warrior’ – to just €20m (£16.6m).

Nahitan Nandez versatility will appeal

Whether the bid comes to fruition remains to be seen, though Nandez’s versatility will certainly appeal to Marcelo Bielsa.

Leeds to spoil Man Utd plan for Boubacar Kamara

Bielsa wants to strenghen midfield and have eyes on two targets

Indeed, Leeds have often struggled for bodies in the centre of the field this season. And with Kalvin Phillips still some two months away from a return, signing a new midfielder appears a top priority this transfer window.

Nandez, meanwhile, has 16 appearances this season for Cagliari. He’s operated as a No 10, on both wings and as a No 8 – versatility that will appeal to Bielsa.

Nandez link comes amid Boubacar Kamara talk

Nandez isn’t the only central midfielder linked to Leeds in the last few days.

Indeed, the Whites are also understood to be considering an approach for Marseille’s Boubacar Kamara.

The midfielder has been cleared to leave Marseille in January, having refused to sign a new deal. With his contract expiring at the end of the season, they would prefer to generate cash for him now.

As such, he’s been mentioned as a possible target for new Red Devils boss Ralf Rangnick. He’s looking to bolster his midfield after outlining the area as a point of weakness.

The Daily Mail, however, claims that Leeds director of football Victor Orta could yet beat them to the punch.

The 22-year-old would be a welcome addition to the Leeds midfield. A box-to-box midfielder, he has represented France Under-21s and also has Champions League experience.

He also made 43 appearances last season, having become a regular in Jorge Sampaoli’s side.

A deal worth £10m has been mooted.

READ MORE: Truth emerges of Bayern’s Raphinha link – with deal hinging on one player