Kemar Roofe was one of our most valuable assets as we looked to secure our promotion back into the Premier League, but United are yet to offer the 26-year-old a new contract, according to the Yorkshire Evening Post.
They understand the club have spent the time since our Play-Offs defeat focusing on retaining manager Marcelo Bielsa, and will turn to Roofe’s situation in the weeks ahead knowing that his market valuation will only diminish if they allow his contract to enter its final twelve months – of which it will on July 1.
What may prove difficult in negotiations with the centre-forward, however, is that Roofe is seeking an improved wage packet that will draw him alongside Patrick Bamford, who was made one our highest earners when signed from Middlesbrough last July.
The club are unlikely to be able to offer Roofe the type of wage structure he desires, though, as failure to return to the top-flight this year has limited our spending powers, and that may also prove problematic with the likes of Pablo Hernandez and Mateusz Klich among others.
The midfield duo are also set to enter the final twelve months of their contracts come July 1, but have clauses in their current deals that can enable a further year if required – dependent on promotion in Hernandez’s case.
Bailey Peacock-Farrell, Stuart Dallas and Gaetano Berardi also have uncertain futures beyond the summer of 2020, and may be forced to join Roofe heading out of the Elland Road exit for free next year if they are unable to come to an agreement with the club over extending their contracts without a sizable pay rise, or be sold this summer.
Thus, particularly in the case of Roofe, the mistakes of 2018, by offering Bamford a lucrative contract, is set to haunt the Whites when they eventually sit down to discuss new deals with the first-team.