Leeds United have ‘submitted a formal offer’ for Los Angeles FC midfielder Jose Cifuentes, reports Ecuadorian news outlet bolavip.com.
Ecuadorian journalist Andreas Ponce reported earlier this week that Leeds are interested in Cifuentes, and now it seems they’ve taken things up a notch.
He joined the Major League Soccer outfit from native club CD Universidad Catolica in a £2.45million deal in 2020.
The 23-year-old is predominantly a central midfielder but he can also play in a deeper or more advanced role.
Significantly, his contract is due to expire at the end of 2023, potentially putting LAFC in a week negotiating position.
‘Several teams in Europe’ want to sign Cifuentes, the report from his homeland claims, but Leeds have seized the initiative by making a bid.
They’ve laid down an offer of $5million, which is the equivalent of about £4.1million.
Champions League outfit Napoli and Premier League sides Leicester City and Brighton are also named as suitors.
LAFC regard Cifuentes as a valuable asset, particularly as he’s set to feature in the Ecuador squad for the upcoming World Cup.
The player has added his own fuel to the fire by admitting that a move to Europe is a ‘dream‘ transfer for him, and it looks like Victor Orta and Andrea Radrizzani hope to make that dream a reality.
Leeds have already signed three central midfield players this summer in Tyler Adams, Marc Roca and Darko Gyabi, but you can see why they’d be interested in Cifuentes too.
Marsch is a former coach of the New York Red Bulls and clearly recognises the potential of the American market.
Adams, Brenden Aaronson and Jack Harrison have all passed through MLS before making an impact in Europe.
Cifuentes boasts a strong record this season, scoring six goals and providing seven assists in 26 appearances across all competitions.
And one player who might be able to endorse him is his new LAFC team-mate Gareth Bale. Cifuentes actually gave up his no. 11 jersey for the Welshman when he arrived in California.
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