Forget McBurnie: Leeds must seek to land this £7.2m-rated PL striker instead

Leeds United supporters have been drowning their sorrows in the Transfer Tavern in the last few hours after seeing their side humbled 3-0 by Championship league leaders Wolves at Elland Road on Wednesday night.

Paul Heckingbottom’s men went into their clash with the Midlands outfit looking to get back to winning ways after being thumped 3-0 by Middlesbrough on Saturday, a result which put a severe dent into their play-off ambitions. And those hopes are now in tatters after another heavy defeat on Wednesday, with goals from Romain Saiss, Willy Boly, and Benik Afobe sealing a routine win for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side, thus leaving Leeds 13th in the Championship table and a hefty nine points adrift of the top six.

Subsequently, there have been many deflated and despondent Leeds fans in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom are already turning their attentions towards Saturday’s trip to struggling Reading.

In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident Whites supporters to get their teeth into, not least recent reports linking them with a summer move for Swansea City youngster Oli McBurnie.

And while the striker’s arrival would be a useful addition at Elland Road, Heckingbottom’s side should forget about a move for the Premier League forward, and instead focus their attentions on luring Southampton’s Shane Long to the club.

Ultimately, the 31-year-old is struggling to regularly nail down a spot in Mauricio Pellegrino’s first team, having failed to start any of their last four Premier League games, and only 12 of their 29 league matches overall this season.

Yet there’s little doubt that he brings something different to the Saints frontline, with his tenacity and overall desire to lead from the front a nightmare for many an opposition backline, while he does bring genuine quality in front of goal as well, with the Republic of Ireland international deceptively strong in the air.

More importantly though, Long has proven his capabilities at Championship level before, having scored 39 goals and laid on 20 assists in 123 games for Reading earlier in his career, form which eventually earned him a move to top-flight side West Brom back in 2011.

And while Heckingbottom’s men aren’t having loads of trouble scoring goals, having bagged 47 in their 36 Championship games, Pierre-Michel Lasogga is only on loan from Hamburg until the end of the campaign, and he has scored 13 of those.

Thus, striking reinforcements will certainly be needed in the summer if Leeds are to sustain a promotion challenge next season, and while Long hasn’t necessarily been the most prolific in recent times, he has excelled at second tier level before, and would bring all round striking qualities to the Whites frontline.

And while McBurnie has made an outstanding start to life at Barnsley with five goals in five games, the more seasoned campaigner that is Long would surely be a shrewder addition for Leeds this summer, and as such they should target a move for the £7.2 million-rated star (as per Transfermarkt) during the close season.

Leeds fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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