EXCLUSIVE: Leeds to back Jesse Marsch with serious money as two top targets are revealed

Jesse Marsch, Leeds manager before Premier League game against Leicester at King Power Stadium

Leeds United are ready to back new boss Jesse Marsch with some serious cash in the summer transfer window – as long as they stay up – with two top targets understood to be Americans, TEAMtalk understands.

The Whites have endured a difficult campaign, having struggled to maintain last season’s high standards. The currently sit 16th in the table, with two recent wins over Norwich and Wolves pulling them seven points clear of safety. As such, there is now a growing optimism that Leeds can soon begin planning for life in the Premier League again next summer.

Leeds chiefs have been delighted with how Marsch has settled into life at Elland Road. And there is a belief that they could yet keep star players such as Raphinha and Kalvin Phillips.

On the subject of Phillips, Thursday’s Paper Talk claims the player has informed Leeds he wishes to stay and sign a new deal.

Further down the line, we understand Leeds are already looking at who can come in – with big plans in place for the summer window.

As such, we can confirm that American star Brenden Aaronson remains the club’s No 1 target.

Aaronson was the club’s top target in January, but Leeds could not get a move finalised. His side Red Bull Salzburg were unwilling to sell mid-season – but Leeds’ interest has not dissipated in anyway.

Leeds ready to try again for Brenden Aaronson

Bielsa's side saw opening bid worth £15m rejected by Salzburg

The USA international midfielder has been in sensational form for Salzburg, playing a major role in their run in the Champions League.

To that end, talks over the deal remain ongoing.

Marsch knows all about Aaronsen and we understand he has already approved his arrival.

Jesse Marsch wants second American in Sergino Dest

TEAMtalk also understands Leeds are looking at a second American signing at Elland Road too in Sergino Dest.

The Barcelona defender has sunk down the pecking order at the Nou Camp, despite only joining in 2020 from Ajax.

He now longer appears to be in Xavi’s long-term plans at Barcelona. As such, Dest may be availble for transfer this summer to raise funds.

And with Barca looking at other options to replace Dest, he will reportedly be made available for transfer.

As such, TEAMtalk understands that Leeds believe he would be an excellent addition to their squad.

Dest is predominantly a right-back, but can play on either side. He can also operate further up the field in a wing-back role, with his flexibility of interest to Leeds – if the price is right.

Leeds have Luke Ayling as their undisputed No 1, but Dest can come in to provide cover, as well as proving an option at left-back too.

Junior Firpo was brought in last summer to play left-back. However, we understand Leeds are also looking at an Anderlecht star as a potential replacement.