Leeds United chiefs see no future for Eunan O’Kane at Elland Road following the Republic of Ireland midfielder’s loan move to Luton Town, according to Football Insider.
O’Kane departed the club for Graeme Jones’ struggling Championship outfit the day before the January window slammed shut, and signed a temporary deal at Kenilworth Road that will keep him in Bedfordshire until the expiry of his United contract in 2021.
The deal struck between Luton and Leeds is thought to include a recall clause, which would allow boss Marcelo Bielsa to bring O’Kane back to Elland Road in the summer or following January window should the Argentine feel a need to bolster his midfield numbers.
It is unlikely that such a clause will be triggered, however, as Bielsa made clear to O’Kane ahead of the 29-year-old’s departure that he did not see a role for the 7-time international to play in West Yorkshire, where the Derry-born midfielder last featured before the boss’ appointment in 2018.
O’Kane’s three-minute outing at home to Queens Park Rangers on the final day of the 2017/18 season is now firmly believed to be his last for United by club chiefs, who do not envisage the former AFC Bournemouth man featuring at Elland Road again in our colours.
Should Bielsa have kept O'Kane in January?
O’Kane is fully fit for the first time since September 2018 following a double leg fracture sustained while with Luton on loan last season, but it is hardly a surprise that he is now expected to remain at Kenilworth Road until the expiry of his Leeds contract next year.
Bielsa has his favoured options in midfield with Mateusz Klich and Kalvin Phillips playing 30 and 26 games in the heart of the side respectively this league season, while Stuart Dallas, Adam Forshaw and Pablo Hernandez have all been given run-outs at some stage.
The boss’ willingness to sanction O’Kane’s 18-month deal with Luton is also a strong indication that he did not expect much of the Republic of Ireland international over the remainder of the season, as Bielsa would otherwise have only sanctioned a half-term contract with an eye to reintroducing the 29-year-old to the fold at Elland Road come the summer.
O’Kane has also relocated to the South East with his family as he looks to reignite his career, suggesting even he expected that his move to Luton will be his last act as a Leeds player.
In other Leeds United news, fans have been reacting on social media after Bielsa refused to make changes at Elland Road.