Leeds United’s pursuit of Rodrigo De Paul has not exactly gone completely cold in the last few weeks, but very little progress has been made between the two clubs in that time.
The Whites have got the bulk of their business complete in the summer transfer window, strengthening the centre of defence as well as the attacking department. On top of that, Leeds have managed to clinch a number of deals to bolster the youth sides as they enter the Premier League 2 this season.
Rodrigo Moreno, Robin Koch, and Diego Llorente have arrived as first-team players, along with permanent deals secured for Illan Meslier and Helder Costa at the start of the window.
However, Leeds might be looking at tying up another deal or two as we approach the final weeks of the transfer window.
Rodrigo De Paul’s name has constantly cropped up since the back end of August at Elland Road and while there is definite interest in him, not much progress has been made since the initial news broke.
The asking price of around €40million is what has put Leeds off an imminent move while the player still remains eager to move to West Yorkshire.
The news from the Leeds end appeared to have gone fairly quiet in the past few weeks as Leeds looked to tie up deals for other key players and The Athletic’s Phil Hay relayed the message that he has been hearing from the Elland Road end of this prospective deal. He stated on the Phil Hay Show Podcast: “It’s been a very odd saga this one because it’s not that Leeds aren’t interested in him.
“They have made that plain, this hasn’t been invented, it’s not a figment of somebody’s imagination. He has been on the list of potential targets, but in no stage over the past three weeks have they gone for it with this one.
“I know the asking price is high at €35million, it’s not a valuation that Leeds want to stretch to, but equally, it doesn’t feel as if they’ve been banging on Udinese’s door trying to drag the price down, or to find ways to manage the deal.
“To a large extent it seems to have sat dormant.”
When commenting on the handful of reports in Italy that a deal is edging closer, Hay continued: “You are reading bits and pieces in Italy that it’s happening and it’s done, but at this end, the message seems to be very, very different.”
Leeds have kept their cards close to their chest this window, and deals to sign key players have accelerated immensely out of nowhere, so this sitting ‘dormant’ is not a suggestion that a deal is dead.
De Paul has been agitating for a move in the past few weeks but Udinese aren’t shifting from their asking price and it’s clear that Leeds won’t be suckered into paying up.
Creating and scoring chances hasn’t been an issue this season and it shouldn’t be an area where Leeds push the boat out, but more seize an opportunity that may come their way.
It’s a lot of money to spend after breaking the transfer record already, but he would no doubt enhance this side immeasurably if a deal can be struck.