Leeds showing 'lot of ambition' over £26m target at Elland Road

Leeds United boss Jesse Marsch celebrates

Leeds United are showing ‘a lot of ambition’ by targeting PSV Eindhoven winger Cody Gakpo as a potential Elland Road replacement for Raphinha, according to Daily Express journalist Ryan Taylor.

The Whites have been busy in the early stages of the transfer window, welcoming Brenden Aaronson, Rasmus Kristensen and Marc Roca to the club, but it appears head coach Jesse Marsch is refusing to rest on his laurels.

GiveMeSport Transfer Verdict
GiveMeSport Transfer Verdict

What’s the latest news involving Gakpo?

According to French media outlet FootMercato, Leeds have identified Gakpo as the ideal replacement in the event of Raphinha moving on from Yorkshire.

The report suggests PSV will not accept bids worth less than £26million as they battle to keep the seven-cap Netherlands international at the club.

Marsch, who was appointed as Leeds’ boss in February and succeeded in staving off relegation to the Championship, appears to be preparing for life without Raphinha by setting his sights on Gakpo.

Leeds turned down a big-money bid from Premier League rivals Arsenal earlier this week, but the Brazilian is known to have an abundance of admirers mulling over whether to test their resolve.

Gakpo, whose PSV contract still has four years to run, has admitted he is keeping his options open during the transfer window.

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What has Ryan Taylor said about Gakpo?

Taylor understands Ruud van Nistelrooy, the former Manchester United striker who is now in charge of PSV, has failed to persuade Gakpo to commit his future to the club.

As a result, the journalist feels a move to Leeds is not out of the question and – should they get their man – he would be a major coup.

Taylor told GIVEMESPORT: “Gakpo has refused to offer Ruud van Nistelrooy assurances that he will stay at PSV.

“Obviously, we’ve seen PSV become a club that will sell players for in the region of £30million. I think if Leeds were to present an offer, it would certainly test the water there.

“It’ll be interesting to see what happens, but I think Leeds are starting to show a lot of ambition in terms of trying to sign a winger and there’s an expectancy now that Raphinha will probably move on.”

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How does Gakpo compare to Raphinha?

Raphinha has been adored by Leeds fans since his £17million arrival from Rennes in 2020 and he has gone on to score 17 goals for the club.

Eleven of those efforts came last season, but Gakpo racked up even better figures after finding the back of the net on 21 occasions and registering a further 15 assists.

The 23-year-old averaged more goals, assists and shots per 90 minutes than the Elland Road favourite in 2021/22, while former Netherlands international Theo Janssen has suggested ‘this boy has everything’, so it is clear that Gakpo would be an exciting replacement if Raphinha were to seal his exit.

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