Leeds hold talks to sign Paul Scholes-like midfielder

Marcelo Bielsa signing autographs

Leeds United's summer of activity is beginning to take shape.

For the first time in 16 years, they will compete in the Premier League and consequently, the squad needs improving.

Marcelo Bielsa is a fabulous coach but he can't do it with last season's squad on their own.

Leeds eventually won the Championship by ten points but they still had their frailties - mainly getting goals from their strikers and defending from set-pieces.

Patrick Bamford offered a lot to the team with his pressing and work rate but at the end of the day, he found the back of the net just 16 times in close to 50 outings.

It looks as though efforts will be made to improve that. Joe Gelhardt has arrived from Wigan while Ollie Watkins and Michy Batshuayi are targets for the Whites as well.

On top of that, Stuttgart forward Nico Gonzalez could be on the verge of joining after visiting the club's facilities. 

Ollie Watkins

How much Leeds plan on spending isn't yet apparent, but they could also sign someone on a free transfer.

Reports a few weeks ago hinted that the Yorkshire side were considering a move for Matty Longstaff.

However, the deal now looks as though it's beginning to materialise. 

The Chronicle has claimed that Newcastle are planning more talks with the midfielder who is now out of contract with the Magpies and has left the club behind.

They also suggest that Leeds have actually held talks to sign the 20-year-old. They and Udinese both hold an interest in Longstaff who is now considering his options ahead of the new campaign.

Matty Longstaff

GIVEMESPORT'S Matt Dawson says...

Longstaff is short of experience having played just 15 senior matches for Newcastle, but it's clear he has enormous potential. 

He knows where the back of the net is, scoring three times for Steve Bruce's men but he also knows how to defend.

Those all-round attributes should be perfect for a manager like Bielsa who loves to extract as many different qualities and positions out of a player as he possibly can. 

In 2019/20, he kept things ticking over with a pass success rate a little over 80%, a tally that tops players like Pablo Hernandez, Stuart Dallas and Gjanni Alioski.

Pablo Hernandez

With that in mind, he'd clearly add a more calming and fluid nature to the Whites' midfield.

Put words from Martin Keown into the frame and you have an even greater picture of what Longstaff can provide.

Speaking about the youngster this season on MOTD 2 (6th October), he said: "The young lad should be knocking on Steve Bruce’s door and saying ‘Why didn’t you play me sooner?'

"He played more passes, covered more distance and really put in a performance. It was like Paul Scholes." 

On a free transfer, this seems like a no-brainer for Leeds.

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