Leeds United’s hopes of signing Thiago Almada appear to have dwindled after the player stated his wish to stay with Velez Sarsfield.
United’s return to the Premier League has sparked a frenzy of transfer speculation. Much is being written about their interest in a new striker, while Ben White’s future also continues to grab headlines.
One area Leeds may also wish to strengthen in is attacking midfield.
Pablo Hernandez has shone this campaign, but at 35 years of age, has often had to settle for playing less than 90 minutes per match.
One potential option is Argentine superstar-in-the-making Almada.
The 19-year-old – previously linked with Man Utd – has already become a regular with Velez Sarsfield in Argentina. He has provided nine goals and four assists inside his first 46 professional club appearances along the way.
To add fuel to the fire, Almada has previously suggested he would be keen to link up with Marcelo Bielsa.
“I would like Bielsa to coach me,” Almada told TyC Sports. “My friends sent me something about Bielsa, but I am calm. Whether it happens or not, we have to see.
“I don’t watch much soccer, but I saw some Leeds highlights and I saw something similar to what we did in Velez with [Gabriel] Heinze.”
However, those hopes appear to have now been dashed. That’s after his Velez teammate Fernando Gago insisted the teenager gave him a transfer promise.
“Everyone knows when it is time to go,” Gago told Ole (via Sport Witness).
“But hey, he’s going to have to stay another year because he already gave me his word. If he doesn’t comply, I won’t let him leave the house.”
Leeds linked with Stuani
Leeds United, meanwhile, are also reported to be pondering a move for Middlesbrough flop Cristhian Stuani.
The Whites relied heavily on 16-goal Patrick Bamford to earn promotion and are seeking attacking reinforcements.
Bamford, who made 45 Championship appearances this season, is unlikely to feature as heavily in the top flight.
Apparently, Bielsa is “thinking” of the Girona attacker for next season.
Uruguayan outlet El Observador via Sport Witness say the 33-year-old Uruguayan striker is in the “orbit” of Leeds United, Bielsa and Victor Orta.