Rodrigo de Paul remains one of Leeds United’s top targets and they are prepared to break their transfer record to sign him, according to a report from Football Insider.
They claim that a Leeds source has revealed the Whites have continued to closely monitor the Argentine midfielder this season after ‘extensive talks’ last summer failed to yield an agreement with Udinese.
The club have apparently re-opened contact with the Serie A outfit to gauge an idea of their demands. The report states that Udinese slapped a £37million pricetag on De Paul last summer.
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Leeds spent £27million to bring Rodrigo from Valencia to Yorkshire ahead of their Premier League return, but they could now exceed that outlay as they seek to push on from their outstanding first season back.
The lowdown on Leeds target De Paul
De Paul, who is predominantly a central midfielder but can also operate in a holding or attacking role, has scored eight goals and provided nine assists this season (via Transfermarkt).
Late in April, he was named as the most in-form player in Serie A by WhoScored, perhaps no surprise given he was man of the match in six out of his last seven appearances and has two goals and two assists in his last two games, via WhoScored.
Having made his international debut in October 2018, he’s now racked up 18 Argentina caps, and according to his former manager Julio Velazquez, the 26-year-old is good enough ‘to play in any club in the world’.
Transfer Tavern verdict
This deal would be another immense show of ambition from Leeds, who will surely have their eyes on a Europa Conference League or even Europa League slot next season.
De Paul, for his part, needs to push for a move. Udinese are sat in 11th in place, and he’s too good for mid-table obscurity.
If the Whites can get a deal done, perhaps it can be the move that really transforms Bielsa’s project that one step further, from lovable underdogs to genuine contenders for European places next season.
In other news, this Leeds ace deserves ‘big, big money’.
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