Leeds United rebuffed four enquiries for one of their young talents over the summer due to Marcelo Bielsa’s growing faith, according to a report.
While Leeds did not make too many signings in the summer transfer window, they have built a competitive team for the present and future during Bielsa’s reign. Their under-23 ranks have been bolstered over the past couple of years with players who could go on to make an impact at senior level in the not-too-distant future.
For example, there are high hopes for midfielder Lewis Bate, who was brought in from Chelsea this summer. One year before his arrival, Leeds dipped into the European talent pool to secure the services of Crysencio Summerville.
The winger arrived in September 2020 having already tasted senior football with FC Dordrecht and ADO Den Haag, both of whom had him on loan from Feyenoord.
But he has had to be patient for opportunities at Leeds, who initially integrated him into their under-23 setup. One year on, his patience seems to have paid off.
A report on Football Insider claims that Leeds received approaches from one club in the EFL and three in Europe about taking Summerville during the recently closed transfer window.
Swansea City were willing to give him a chance in the Championship. Alternatively, he could have returned to the Netherlands with Groningen or Heerenveen, or moved to Belgium with Club Brugge. There were a variety of loan and permanent offers.
But Leeds turned them all down, the report continues, because Bielsa has a role in mind for Summerville.
Summerville made three appearances in pre-season for the first team and has been on the bench for Leeds’ opening trio of Premier League matches. Although his senior debut is yet to arrive, he could have more of a chance this season.
Leeds may have added Daniel James to their squad to provide further competition out wide, but Bielsa sanctioned the departures of Helder Costa and Ian Poveda, to Valencia and Blackburn Rovers respectively.
Therefore, if Summerville bides his time, he could take the next step in his career without having to leave Leeds.
Turning 20 next month, he has been capped by the Netherlands at all age groups from under-16 to under-19.
And after six goals in 14 games for Leeds’ academy side last season, he will be hoping to reach the next stage at club level too.
Orta had shock Leeds transfer interest
Meanwhile, Leeds supposedly had transfer interest in Luis Diaz before Tuesday’s deadline, following the Porto winger’s strong links with Everton.
Leeds had strong links with further signings up front throughout the summer window. Club Brugge’s Noa Lang featured on their radar, but he stayed in Belgium.
According to Record, Leeds also looked at Colombia international Diaz.
His name cropped up several time in Everton circles, with boss Rafael Benitez reportedly showing interest. In fact, the Toffees tried unsuccessfully to include James Rodriguez in a deal.
Record claims that Leeds remained in the background. However, the club – led by director of football Victor Orta – never got as far as making a bid.
By doing so, they would have had to activate Diaz’s €80million (£68million) release clause and subsequently smash their transfer record.
Last summer’s signing Rodrigo still holds that record at £27million, with James costing a reported £25million.