Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Leeds Utd transfer news: Arnaud Kalimuendo hopes up in smoke as triple lure sees striker near £21m move elsewhere

Arnaud Kalimuendo of Lens during the Ligue 1 match between RC Lens and Stade Rennais (Rennes) at Bollaert-Delelis Stadium

Leeds United’s hopes of signing Arnaud Kalimuendo appear to be over amid reports that the striker is on the verge of a move to one of PSG’s Ligue 1 rivals.

The Whites have brought in eight new faces this summer, spending around £85m in the process. And four of those signings played a leading role as Jesse Marsch’s side started the new season with a 2-1 win over Wolves at Elland Road. However, with a few weeks left in the window, Leeds may not be done yet and are still reportedly in the market for new signings.

To that end, Marsch would like Leeds to strengthen their forward options to provide cover and competition for Patrick Bamford. The England cap saw his 2021/22 season ruined by a plethora of injuries, limiting the striker to just 560 minutes of Premier League football.

Now approaching full fitness, the good news for Leeds is that Bamford was able to play 84 minutes of Saturday’s Premier League opener. However, Leeds realise they are only one injury away from a repeat of last season’s struggles.

And while Joe Gelhardt, Sam Greenwood or even Rodrigo are options, neither are considered as out and out attackers.

To that end, Leeds were keen on a potential deal for Charles De Ketelaere. And while they had a £33.7m offer accepted by Club Brugges, the player’s desire to sign for Milan saw the Italian giants ultimately prevail.

Exploring the market for alternatives, Leeds United are also being strongly linked with Kalimuendo.

The 20-year-old striker has impressed during the off-season with PSG, scoring goals in two of their friendlies in Japan.

As such, their coach Christophe Galtier had expressed his wish to keep him.

PSG make decision to sell Arnaud Kalimuendo

However, sporting director Luis Campos was always of the mind to sell Kalimuendo. Knowing PSG had a wealth of attacking options, there appears little chance of him earning game time with Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Hugo Ekitike all ahead of him in the pecking order.

As such, news emerged on Tuesday evening that PSG were preparing to sell Kalimuendo.

That raised hopes that Leeds could launch an offer for his services, with PSG seemingly willing to sell for around £21m (€25m).

However, as per L’Equipe, Kalimuendo is now on the brink of securing a move to Rennes.

Arnaud Kalimuendo of PSG during the preseason friendly soccer match between Paris Saint-Germain and Kawasaki Frontale at National Stadium in Tokyo

Their article read: “Stade Rennais and PSG were, in recent hours, very close to finalising their agreement for a transfer estimated at 25million euros, bonus included. A transaction with a percentage on a future resale of the attacker.”

Doubts remain over whether Leeds did launch an official approach, though 90min say he has spurned an offer from Leeds to move across France.

To that end, the Ligue 1 outfit are also able to offer Arnaud Kalimuendo three major incentives, neither of which Leeds can match.

Firstly, they are able to offer him a clear and obvious guarantee of first-team football. Moving to Leeds would not offer that. Secondly, Rennes also have a season of Europa League football on the horizon.

And finally, and perhaps key, they also offer the young striker the opportunity to remain in his homeland. Rennes, situated in the north-west of France, is around 348 km away from Paris.

Leeds Utd could look to Che Adams

That will mean Leeds will have to go back to the drawing board in their quest to strengthen their attacking options.

Southampton’s Che Adams remains a player of interest to Leeds amid claims earlier over the weekend that Southampton are looking to sell.

He did not play a part a part in their opening day defeat at Tottenham, leading to Ralph Hasenhuttl facing some awkward questions.

To that end, reports are indicating he could be put up for sale for around £12m.

However, Nottingham Forest are also lurking with intent, while The Athletic on Wednesday suggests Everton could also make a move

That said, talkSPORT’s transfer expert Alex Crooks insists Saints are not looking to sell Adams and will resist any offers that come their way.

Leeds are also reportedly still in the running to sign Juan Mata and a report on Wednesday claims the former Man Utd man now has a move to Elland Road as his No 1 priority.