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Whelan Tips Leeds United To Enter the Race For Southampton Striker: Smart Move For Bielsa?

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In an exclusive interview to Football Insider, former Leeds United striker Noel Whelan has suggested that the Whites could sign Southampton ace Che Adams for a bargain price this summer, as the Saints’ financial struggles mount owing to the suspension of the league season. It has been suggested that the Premier League side reported a £34m loss for the year ending on 31st June 2019 and that the stoppage of football would’ve done little to help their cause this time around.

Confirming that Leeds United are interested in Che Adams, Sporting Director Victor Orta had cryptically revealed to Scouted Hub that the Championship club came extremely close to signing the Englishman in January, only for the Saints to pull the plug in the last minute because ‘he gave a nice assist against Leicester’.

Speaking on the matter, Whelan said, “I do not think there will be any imminent move but Leeds will have that one in mind, it is an option. They know he is available now and at a cheaper price. Everyone’s value has gone down so it might work out better for Leeds in the long-run.”

What Is The Current Strike Situation At Elland Road?

By selling Kemar Roofe to Anderlecht and then loaning Jay-Roy Grot to Vitesse in Holland, Marcelo Bielsa was forced to start the campaign with just three realistic options to choose from in the centre-forward’s role – Patrick Bamford, Eddie Nketiah and Tyler Roberts. While the former was obviously the preferred option owing to his experience and abilities, the Welshman was often seen playing second fiddle. The Arsenal loanee was mostly on the bench and was used as an impact substitute.

Bamford’s return of 13 goals from 36 Championship appearances was apparently seen as a concern by the manager. To address this lack of goals (and Arsenal recalling Nketiah), the Whites secured the loan acquisition of French forward Jean-Kevin Augustin in January, but it’s safe to say that his three Championship appearances were extremely underwhelming. The blame was placed on the forward’s lack of match fitness.

Leeds United Are Interested In Che Adams - Adams controls the ball
SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 18: Che Adams of Southampton is challenged by Matt Doherty of Wolverhampton Wanderers during the Premier League match between Southampton FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers at St Mary’s Stadium on January 18, 2020 in Southampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

What Would Che Adam Bring To Elland Road Next Season?

The former Birmingham City striker earned himself a move to St. Mary’s Stadium last summer after what was a sensational display for the midlands club. His 46 Championship matches yielded an impressive return of 22 goals and a further five assists. Although many expected him to replicate the same form quite seamlessly in the Premier League, it’s safe to say things didn’t go quite to plan.

The forward played in 22 top-flight outings this term for the Saints and didn’t manage even a single goal along the way. Although he boasts good natural talent as well as the intelligence required to be a top striker, Adams seemed to struggle to even make the ball stick for most of the season, let alone put it into the back of the net. A move back to the Championship (although remember Leeds are still top in the Championship table and are favourites to gain promotion at this time) could be precisely what the 23-year-old needs to regain his confidence.

Leeds United Are Interested In Che Adams: Good Business For Bielsa?

Leeds United are now unlikely to resume the season with the services of loan signing Jean-Kevin Augustin, with the Yorkshire Evening Post reporting that the Elland Road club are assessing a recurring hamstring problem that could put an end to his stint in the Championship.

With just a single point separating them from West Brom in second place, Bielsa will have to ensure that they don’t slip up in the coming weeks. If the Whites can secure promotion to the top-flight next term, the addition of a striker with experience of playing in the league could be a priceless asset. With the report suggesting that the forward could be available for as little as £10m, it would be silly on Leeds United’s part to not at least attempt to sign him up in the summer.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

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