During a festive period where relegation to League One next season became a genuine prospect; Leeds United are, it seems, trying to dodge the punches from a concerned fan base by recruiting a pair of Serie A players.
It has been another festive season to be wholly un-jolly at Elland Road for more reasons than one. This time, however, it was on-pitch woes which jumped to the top of their naughty list.
Loss to Wigan
On paper, Leeds should have beaten second-from-bottom Wigan Athletic on home soil and breezed at least seven points away from the dreaded drop zone. As it was, the Latics recorded their first win since October and closed the gap on their 20th-placed hosts to just four points.
Only bitter-rivals Millwall sit between Neil Redfearn's men and the relegation trap door. They really could do with winning a match in December, just to give them something to build on going into 2015, but a trip to high-flying Derby County is all that remains.
January is often a place for refuge and hope for a club in Leeds' position, however. New faces are often bought in to help stop the rot. So what do the Yorkshire club have up their sleeves?
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Performing a U-turn
Theoretically, of course, there shouldn't be anything, owing to their transfer ban. For the sake of the article, however, lets just say that Leeds will indeed be able to bring players in - as most clubs with similar embargoes seem to manage.
Leonardo Pavoletti and Rene Krhin are the players being linked with a move from Italy. Heard of them? - Me neither.
A short amount of digging will reveal that Pavoletti is a 26-year-old striker who, for the last couple of seasons, has been among the goals at Serie B level. Though he has struggled for first team action at Serie A's Sassuolo.
Krhin, on the other hand, has an impressive looking CV at first sight. The 24-year-old midfielder made his debut under Jose Mourinho at Inter Milan. Unfortunately, he has only featured five more times for the giants since that time. Though to be fair, a four-year spell in Bologna probably doesn't help those stats.
It would be narrow-minded to suggest that these players couldn't cut it in England without giving them a proper look, but it is an extremely risky move if they prove to be the only bit of transfer business.
Fans are short of confidence when it comes to their current striking options. Steve Morison was roundly slated on social media when he came on against Wigan, while Billy Sharp kicked a water bottle and didn't hang around for the final whistle after being substituted in the same match.
Maybe a player with Championship experience and a point to prove may be their best option. Emile Heskey, despite becoming the unfortunate butt of much football banter, has made a comeback to England with Bolton. His transfer already looks like a shrewd move by the Trotters.
Leeds will certainly need something that's for sure. Pavoletti is a start, but a back-up plan might not be the worst idea that anybody at the club has ever had.
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