Daniel James has really come on his own in the past two months after being linked with a move to Leeds United. The Welsh winger was close to joining the Whites in January but the move failed to go through due to internal boardroom politics at the Welsh club. Reports came out that Leeds United were willing to pay as much as £10m to land this 21-year-old winger in January.
It was believed that Bielsa had handpicked the winger from a list of probable wingers and one can see clearly why the Argentine manager rated him so highly when quite a few were slightly sceptical of that kind of price tag. Recently, the Swans ran Manchester City close in the FA Cup, and they almost pulled off a classic cup upset.
However, certain decisions went against them and the Citizens rallied back to win 3-2 after being 2-0 down at half time. One player who once again caught everyone’s attention was Daniel James as he caused a lot of trouble to the City defence on the break and on another day, he could have scored. His work rate, intensity and ability to drive the ball forward showed why Bielsa was so keen on him.
After the game Graham Potter was asked about his impact, and this is what the Swansea manager had to say, ”He was (outstanding), he’s got such courage, he can run, he can sprint away from people at a high level and he can repeat it, and he’s got a bit of quality as well. He’s in his first season, he’s making his way in the game, but he’s a tremendous lad, tremendous character and it’s nice that he is enjoying his football with us.”
BT Sport pundit John Hartson praised him and asked whether he is now worth double of what the Whites were looking to pay for him in the summer to which Potter replied, ”Absolutely, why not? And treble!”
The treble bit was more tongue in cheek remark maybe, but it is clear that United are not getting their hands on the player for £10m if they try to sign him in the summer. Moreover, the Swans are trying to tie the winger down on a new contract, and it seems like United’s chase for the winger could probably come to an end even though they wanted to go after him again in the summer.
However, if the Whites move to the Premier League, then the dynamics can change quickly as the player might be attracted to a move to them. United will also enjoy the benefit of financial rewards of moving to the Premier League so they too can offer more than what they were offering for the 21-year-old in January.