These transfers are never straight forward are they?
Reports a few weeks ago from The Northern Echo suggested that Leeds were interested in bringing Burnley defender Ben Gibson to Elland Road. The 26-year-old defender only joined the Clarets a year ago but looks set to depart Turf Moor already.
I wrote at the time that this would be a great move for Leeds United to make. Seeing as Pontus Jansson’s place in the heart of defence has still not been filled, a move for someone who has got experience in getting teams promoted would be a fantastic addition to a side that came so close last year but just couldn’t get the job done, just like Gibson did at Middlesbrough.
Those plans though have hit a bump in the road. According to The Mirror (via HITC), his former club are also interested in making a move for him. The North East side appointed Jonathan Woodgate as head coach over the summer, and according to The Teesside Gazette, Woodgate is something of an inspiration to Gibson, having seen him as a mentor when he was coming through the academy at The Riverside.
This is why I have said in previous posts the Leeds needed to get their business done as soon as possible and let other sides do the panicking. This is the sort of move that should have been set in motion the day after Pontus Jansson departed for Brentford. Now they face the prospect of losing out on someone to a team that could be in contention with them for promotion.
With Middlesbrough finishing in the top seven in each of the last two seasons, they’ve shown that they are a force to be reckoned with in this division, and Leeds could have just handed them a key man in the fight to go up by not acting fast enough.
This is just the latest incident in a string of offenses that Marcelo Bielsa has committed this pre-season in getting his team prepared, or un-prepared depending on your view of things and hopefully this doesn’t end up coming back to bite the Argentinian. There are plenty of other teams interested in him, including some Premier League sides which would take the sting out of it somewhat, but Leeds cannot afford to let a target like this slip away from them, particularly if it’s to a promotion rival.