According to the latest reports from Daily Mail, Leeds United will look to bring in Ivan Sunjic in this transfer window if Kalvin Phillips is sold this summer. Phillips is attracting plenty of interest from Premier League clubs with Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United all seemingly interested. What has added more fire to Phillips’ exit is that the midfielder reportedly rejected an initial offer for a new contract.
Bielsa is reluctant to lose him, but the Whites are increasingly aware that they might have to part ways with the midfielder if his valuation is met. The Yorkshire outfit is said to be holding on to the price tag of £30m. For many, that would be a great deal, but even with all that money, the Whites will find it hard to replace him.
Sunjic is seen as a significant talent in Croatia, and the 22-year-old is also the captain of his u-21 national team. The midfielder is a regular for Dinamo Zagreb, a club which has produced some top talents over the years.
Can Sunjic act as a replacement for Phillips?
Phillips is currently one of the first names on the team sheet for Leeds United, and he is as crucial to the Whites as Sergio Busquets was to Barcelona in his prime. The 23-year-old is more than a midfield disruptor as Phillips forms a base of attack for his side and his on the ball qualities make him a special player.
Sunjic is a versatile midfielder, and he has the technical qualities to thrive in the defensive midfield position. Moreover, the Croatian can fit in as a central midfielder or an attacking midfielder when required. Italian heavyweights Inter Milan were also interested in him once, so that is a testament to how good the Croatian is in his game.
The 22-year-old also has the experience of playing in the Europa League and is seen as a leader of his side. Potential wise, we think that Sunjic has it in him to replace Phillips.
What should Bielsa do?
However, the player might take some time to settle in at a new club and in a new country. There is no guarantee that Sunjic would hit the ground running straightaway which Leeds would need if they sell Phillips in this window. The Whites should try to keep hold of Phillips in this window at all cost. As for Sunjic, he has the potential to be his replacement, but we always know that sometimes potential doesn’t always come to reality as one expects.