Leeds appear highly unlikely to sign Todd Cantwell before Friday’s EFL deadline after Norwich made clear their asking price for the player.
Cantwell, 22, enjoyed a breakthrough season at Norwich City in 2019-2020 but could not prevent relegation for the Canaries. His seven goals from 40 appearances in all competitions turned a few heads and prompted speculation of a move.
Nothing happened on deadline day but the EFL window does not close until October 16. Leeds could still pounce amid reports that they have already offered £15m for the England Under-21 schemer.
Cantwell was omitted from Norwich’s squad for their last two Championship games, fuelling speculation of an exit.
However, it’s reported that while Leeds remain keen on Cantwell, Norwich are seeking a fee nearer £25m for the player.
And that price, according to The Sun, has put Leeds’ director of football, Victor Orta, off.
In fact, unless there’s a serious reduction in Norwich’s demands, a deal to take Cantwell to Elland Road looks highly unlikely.
However, he hinted they could wait until January before bringing in any more signings.
“We analyse all the players,” he said, when asked if they could move for Cantwell or Derby’s Louie Sibley. “We know them really well, their clubs were our rivals, we analysed (Cantwell) in the Premier League. But it’s like a lot of players we’ve analysed.
“It’s difficult. They are players we analysed, we have information and then we need to think about the possibility. We are analysing but obviously the market is greatly reduced now. Even for us it’s difficult to evaluate clearly one point of view. The availability is reduced from the other (international) market.
“We are always focused on information, managing it, analysing players, their availability, staying updated.
“That could be useful for the winter market. We need to put in practice the usefulness of the knowledge.
“When we analysed the (international) market we detected that with the requirements we have for this position. If a player is not realistic over all the requirements, bringing in a player for the sake of bringing in a player is not clever.
“It can be worse. We prefer to bring in a good player.”
Pundit doubts Cantwell chances
Noel Whelan is also dubious as to whether Leeds will sign Cantwell. The former Leeds striker turned pundit also suggests much of the ‘interest’ in the player is being driven by his agent.
“From what I have heard, was it Cantwell’s agent that was pushing that one? That is what I’ve been hearing on the grapevine,” he told Football Insider. “Leeds might be interested in him, but they weren’t desperate for him. It’s more his agent pushing that one.”
The Whites’ summer recruitment has been praised by many pundits. Manager Marcelo Bielsa has added quality to his ranks, with striker Rodrigo the most high-profile capture from Valencia.
Although just four games in the signs are good, with the Elland Road outfit eighth in the standings with seven points to their name. Cantwell would be another solid signing, with Whelan labelling him a “very good young player”.
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