EXCLUSIVE: Leeds exploring loan deal capture of powerful USA striker

United States forward Daryl Dike (11) runs in action during the CONCACAF Gold Cup Group B match between the United States and Canada

Leeds United are looking at American striker Daryl Dike as a transfer option this month, according to TEAMtalk sources.

Leeds impressed upon their return to the Premier League last season, finishing ninth. However, their second year back in the top flight under Marcelo Bielsa will be more of a challenge. It did not start in ideal fashion, as they lost 5-1 to Manchester United. They have since faced questions over whether they need further reinforcements.

Last summer, Leeds showed ambition in the market by spending on the likes of Rodrigo, Diego Llorente, Robin Koch and Raphinha. However, this year, their only additions have been Junior Firpo and Kristoffer Klaesson.

Each move was out of necessity. Firpo replaced the released Ezgjan Alioski at left-back and Klaesson was chosen as successor to departing backup goalkeeper Kiko Casilla.

However, it seems they still need to add a new midfielder as cover and competition for Kalvin Phillips. He was on the scoresheet on Tuesday night as Leeds beat Crewe 3-0 in the Carabao Cup, with Bielsa praising a lesser-seen Leeds man.

Leeds, though, have stated through Bielsa they are unlikely to add further to their squad this month.

Another position Leeds lack strength in is up front. Both Rodrigo and Tyler Roberts can deputise in a central striking role. However, as illustrated on Tuesday night, neither look capable of displacing main man Patrick Bamford up front.

Leeds though could fix that though with a temporary swoop for Dike.

Sources close to Leeds have suggested a loan deal could be possible, which is where Dike comes in. He could be available to loan from MLS side Orlando City.

Dike spent the second half of last season on loan at Championship Barnsley, performing very well, bagging nine goals in 19 games.

The arrival of Dike would also tick boxes for Leeds’ American co-owners 49ers Enterprises, who would be delighted to see him arrive at Elland Road.

However, we understand that Dike’s former manager at Barnsley, Valerian Ismael – now in charge at West Brom – is leading the race for his signature.

Ismael wants another forward to bolster the Baggies’ promotion charge and he has held talks about the striker.

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Eredivisie interest in Leeds prospect

Meanwhile, Eredivisie side Cambuur are reportedly hoping to persuade Leeds to let Cody Drameh move this summer.

Drameh, 19, joined the club on a four-year deal last summer.

After the move from Fulham, he went on to make 23 appearances for Leeds’ U23 side last season.

Since then he has not only featured in pre-season for the first team, but also found himself on the bench at the weekend against Everton.

His progression has reportedly caught the eye of Eredivisie side Cambuur. Journalist Andor Faber tweeted they are ‘preying’ on Drameh.

It’s possible the youngster came onto their radar after playing in the Netherlands during pre-season. He appeared in a friendly against Ajax.

However, Faber also said there may be a spanner in the works. That is the belief he could get playing time at Elland Road this season and is considered an important member of Bielsa’s squad.

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