Middlesbrough have put a £15m price tag on centre-forward Britt Assombalonga, who has been linked with a move to Leeds United.
Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa is in the hunt for a striker, with Middlesbrough’s Assombalonga the newest name on the radar at Elland Road.
According to The Mirror, Boro have now placed a £15m asking price on the centre-forward – the same fee which they paid Forest for the striker in 2017.
Reports suggest that this is to scare Leeds away.
However, the Mirror claim that the Whites are in such desperate need for a striker, they may be still interested in parting way with the money.
The Boro forward hasn’t featured in the last nine league games through a bad injury but he is now on the fringes of the first team once again.
This may not deter Leeds, who could have plenty of funds available from their new Adidas kit partnership.
On Teesside, Middlesbrough have turned their season around since the start of December, going form relegation candidates to play-off hopefuls.
Boro’s change in fortune means the club would have even more incentive to keep Assombalonga on Teesside.
Meanwhile, Leeds have only netted once in their last four games – with the need for a striker larger than ever.
Marcelo Bielsa has seen offensive loanees Jack Clarke and Eddie Nketiah return to their parent clubs in January – leaving question marks over the Whites’ attack.
The club have been linked with a number of strikers in recent weeks – including Andre Gray, Rhian Brewster and Che Adams.
Reports in the Yorkshire Evening Post, stated that the Whites had a record-breaking £20m bid for Adams, turned down by Southampton on Wednesday.
Leeds’ lack of composure in-front of goal has seen their 10-point cushion over third place slip to just four points in recent weeks.
Assombalonga is proven at Championship level and if fit, his goals may be the difference between Leeds going up and staying down.
Many critics believe it was Leeds’ lack of investment last January that threw away their promotion chances – something the club will not want to happen again.
In other transfer news, the Whites are expecting to announce the signing of Man City winger Ian Poveda in the next couple of days.
Poveda is expected to be brought in as a replacement for Jack Clarke – who returned to Spurs at the start of the month.