Leeds United are in the market for a new left-back in the January transfer window.
That’s according to journalist Pete O’Rourke, who claimed that strengthening the position is a top priority for manager Jesse Marsch and director of football Victor Orta after the World Cup.
“I think left back is definitely a top priority,” he revealed to GIVEMESPORT.
“If they can go and find a new left-back and maybe if a centre-half did become available on the market, it’s something that they might look at to try and shore up their defensive woes.”
The arrival of a new left-back could actually solve the central defensive issue too, seeing as the towering presence of Pascal Struijk has been shifted out there for the majority of the season.
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One name that has been linked with a switch to Elland Road is Valencia teenager Jesus Vazquez.
Reports in Spain (as relayed by Sport Witness) claim that the Yorkshire giants are in the race for his signature heading into the new year, though they face competition from the likes of Inter Milan and AZ Alkmaar.
Vazquez’s growth at Los Che has been stunted by the fact that he has two other players ahead of him in the pecking order, the long-serving Jose Gaya and Toni Lato.
The 19-year-old gem has been lauded as an “exciting prospect” by talent scout Jacek Kulig and did start Valencia’s opening two LaLiga games of the season, so their manager certainly trusts him to be called upon at such an early stage of his career.
Whether it’s Vazquez or another left-back, it will allow the American head coach to put the 23-year-old back in his natural central position, where the side look weakest – even skipper Liam Cooper looks a shadow of his old self. It needs that youthful injection and that’s what the Dutchman can provide.
Not only does he stand a whopping 6 foot 3 in height but the £29k-per-week titan had topped the passing accuracy charts in the past two seasons, as per WhoScored, but now on the left, he’s the seventh-best passer.
Meanwhile, via FBref, the former Ajax graduate sits amongst the top 3% for aerial duels won, the top 7% for tackles and the top 12% for blocks per 90, when compared to his positional peers across Europe’s elite five divisions.
He’s clearly capable of mixing it with the best, which is why he – and subsequently Leeds – would benefit from a left-back addition such as Vazquez in January.