Leeds rival Prem duo as second Derby youngster is added to targets

Jason Knight

Leeds United are reported to be plotting a double raid on Derby after adding a second of their talented teens to their list of transfer targets.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side have made an impressive return to life in the Premier League and currently sit 12th after 17 games. Their attacking verve has won plenty of admirers, though they do have quite a leaky defence. Indeed, one pundit has labelled Bielsa and his side ‘average’ in the face of their porous nature.

The Whites, however, have looked a little light of midfield options. As such, seeking some quality cover and competition for Kalvin Phillips and Mateusz Klich appears a transfer must.

They were strongly linked with progressive Derby youngster Louie Sibley over the summer. The 19-year-old has made 33 appearances for the Rams and announced himself on the big stage with a fine hat-trick at Millwall last season.

That led to claims that Leeds were keen on a deal, though Derby were said to have placed a £10m fee on his head.

While no deal came about, Leeds have continued to monitor his progress over the course of this season.

But now Football Insider claim the Whites have also joined the chase for a second Derby teenager in Jason Knight.

Knight is another who has progressed through Derby’s youth ranks and has well over 50 appearances under his belt.

Capable of playing across the midfield, Knight has started 21 of Derby’s 22 Championship games this season.

Leeds, however, are not alone in chasing the player though with West Ham and Burnley also credited with an interest.

While a January deal for the pair looks unlikely, it’s suggested the pair could be subject of a joint summer approach from Leeds.

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Tyler Roberts exit talk denied

Marcelo Bielsa, meanwhile, has denied suggestions Leeds could allow Tyler Roberts to move on this month.

Speculation has claimed that Championship side Derby are keen to take the forward on loan.

Speaking in Friday’s press conference, however, Bielsa stressed the Wales international‘s importance.

Tyler Roberts TEAMtalk

“Tyler has always been in my plans. I value him in the football and human aspect,” the manager told reporters (via Leeds Live).

“He has an important role inside our team. It is true he is having difficulties to have continuity, but for me is full of resources and very important for us.”

Roberts did not make the squad for Leeds’ most recent game, the 3-0 defeat to Spurs. Speaking ahead of Sunday’s FA Cup clash with Crawley Town, Bielsa revealed that the forward will miss out again.

He added: “When Tyler has been available he’s always been in the 18-man squad.

“I don’t ignore there’s a 20-man squad, but I say 18 because it reiterates his importance.”

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