Leeds and West Brom face PL competition for Saint Etienne defender

Date published: Monday 27th January 2020 10:31

Reports in the French media suggest that Leeds United and West Bromwich Albion are interested in signing Saint Etienne defender Harold Moukoudi on loan. 

L’equipe suggest that Cameroon international is available on loan until the end of the season, with Burnley, Derby County and Stoke City the other clubs interested in his signature.

The Ligue 1 club wouldn’t be offering a clause to buy Moukoudi, who originally joined the Ligue 1 club from Le Havre in the summer and remains in their long-term plans.

But the 22-year-old, who is described as a powerful and athletic presence in centre of defence, has actually been quite a fairly regular presence in Claude Puel’s preferred backline this season, handed 11 league starts and a further five appearances in cup competitions.

But former Leicester manager Puel reportedly prefers to use a partnership of Loïc Perrin and William Saliba, the latter currently loaned back from parent club Arsenal after joining the Gunners on a £27m fee in the summer.

This is one of the first defenders to be linked with Leeds during the January transfer window, with adding a striker believed to be the top priority for Marcelo Bielsa.

They’re evidently no strangers to the French market, with PSG academy graduate Jean-Kevin Augustin, currently on loan at Monaco, reportedly set to join in the coming days.

However, they are looking a little light in defensive options with long-serving squad option Gaetano Berardi currently struggling with an injury and highly-rated Brighton loanee Ben White potentially needed to cover in midfield for Kalvin Phillips, who must serve a three-match suspension after the straight red card he was shown in United’s 1-0 defeat to QPR.

If they are in for Moukoudi, they face stiff competition with Derby looking to bolster their defensive options after club captain Richard Keogh’s contract was terminated, with Stoke and West Brom looking to do the same.

Slaven Bilic’s Baggies are currently top of the Championship in spite of failing to win their last six league games, and the Croatian may well consider adding a defender to help solve their woes at the back.

But the quartet of Championship clubs could be left disappointed with Sean Dyche’s Burnley said to be another contender for his signature.

 

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