Perfect Kalvin Phillips foil found as Leeds near club-record midfielder deal

Nahitan Nandez, Cagliari midfielder bandage

wLeeds are reported to be closing in on a club-record signing of Uruguayan midfielder Nahitan Nandez after a change of heart from two other suitors.

The Whites concluded a brilliant first season back in the Premier League by securing a ninth-placed finish. That has left fans dreaming of what the club will do in the summer as they look to bridge that gap between themselves and the European places. And the signing of a new left-back and a new top-class midfielder appear top of Victor Orta’s wishlist.

The need to bolster their midfield is an obvious one. Stuart Dallas has impressed in that role and swept the board at their player of the season awards. However, Leeds have looked light in that area whenever talisman Kalvin Phillips has been absent.

Bielsa’s side picked up just six points up from a possible 27 in his absence in 2020/21.

Leeds therefore have been looking for a player who not just covers for Phillips, but also someone who compliments him. One star who has been linked is Nandez. He was mentioned as a target for Leeds and Bielsa all the way back in 2019.

Leeds have since followed his progress closely and the player is once again on their radar. Indeed, both Leeds and West Ham were mentioned as suitors for him ahead of the January window.

Now Nandez is firmly in their sights, with chairman Andrea Radrizzani’s links to the Italian game a crucial factor.

However, Leeds are not the midfielder’s only suitors. Just last week it was reported that both Roma and Inter were also weighing up swoops.

Indeed, as per Calciomercato, Leeds were likely to miss out on his signature as he awaited the Serie A pair to make their move.

June 24 Transfer Chatter: Chelsea in for Grealish, Arsenal to sell Saliba and Ramos future decided

Chelsea look to be set to rival Man City in the race to sign Jack Grealish, while Arsenal want to sell William Saliba and Sergio Ramos looks set to move to Paris St-Germain.

Now though, Sardinian paper L’Union Sarda claims Leeds are leading the chase for Nandez and are favourites to sign him. Furthermore, they claim both Roma and Inter will not be pursuing a deal and will instead look elsewhere.

They claim Leeds are ready to trigger the €36m exit clause that exists in his deal. That would make the 25-year-old their club record signing, topping the £27m paid for Rodrigo by £3m.

As per the report, Leeds don’t expect to complete his signing until after the Copa America is finished. Nandez is currently on duty with Uruguay in Brazil.

Doubts are emerging that Harry Kane will get the transfer of his choice this summer – read the latest here.

Noa Lang hopes grow for Leeds

Leeds are also reported to be growing increasingly hopeful of signing Noa Lang this summer. That’s amid claims the player has told his agent he’s keen to make the move to Elland Road.

Their interest in the Brugge winger is well documented and was last week confirmed by trusted transfer guru Fabrizio Romano.

On Wednesday, we reported how Lang’s side, Club Brugge, were warning suitors for their top stars how signing them would not come cheap.

But with talks having been held with director of football Victor Orta, Leeds remain undeterred. Indeed, they are reportedly actively pursuing the deal.

It’s claimed Lang – who played in Ajax’s academy alongside Pascal Struijk – wants to take his game to the next level. And he sees a move to Elland Road as the perfect way in which to do that.

READ MORELeeds to hold off Everton and seal £1.5m deal for exciting teenage talent