A playoff semifinal heartbreak against Derby County has sent Leeds United back to square one. They were flying high in the early months but failed to retain the momentum when it mattered the most. The long-pending Premier League return has to wait for at least one more season now as the Whites must fix their shortcomings and come up with a better challenge to achieve it next year.
Marcelo Bielsa, meanwhile, is discussing a few things with owner Andrea Radrizzani before deciding upon his Leeds future. The Italian businessman has revealed the same (as claimed by talkSPORT) stating ‘the next few days will be decisive’ whether the iconic Argentine agrees to extend his stay at Elland Road.
This has not stopped the rumours though. According to Estadio Deportivo, Leeds are likely to reignite their interest in Jese Rodriguez, the Paris St-Germain attacker whom they tried to rope in during the winter window. The Spaniard, however, opted to join Real Betis on a short-term loan deal but failed miserably having netted only twice in 14 La Liga outings.
The 26-year-old forward from Gran Canaria was once compared to Cristiano Ronaldo while making strides in Castilla before breaking into the Blancos’ senior side. But a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament in the right knee ruled him out for nine months at the zenith of his career, and the player struggled to resurrect his form despite completing a €25m transfer to the French capital a couple of years later.
A move to PSG did not work out in his favour either as he not only struggled to attain minutes but also failed to impress at Las Palmas, Stoke City and Real Betis, having secured an array of ambitious loan spells. Jese is desperate to kickstart his career but, at the same time, requires proper guidance to regain his lost status.
Although he had a dismal stint in England with the Potters, a switch to West Yorkshire would be beneficial for all parties involved. The former Spain youth international is known for his ability to feature down the wide, as a centre-forward, second striker, False 9 or even in a ‘number 10’ role. The versatility he offers would boost Bielsa with more flexibility as well as quality in the attacking third – something Leeds lacked in the culminating weeks despite the presence of Kemar Roofe, Patrick Bamford and veteran Pablo Hernandez high up the pitch.
Talks are pretty premature at this stage, and the Whites should look to tie him down temporarily this summer before plotting any permanent swoop later on.
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