According to Mail Online, Leeds United are keeping close tabs on FC Koln centre-back Timo Hubers. But they are not alone in the hunt with West Ham United, Crystal Palace, Southampton, Newcastle United and Fulham also monitoring his situation ahead of a potential summer transfer.
The Whites are fighting for survival under Jesse Marsch who replaced Marcelo Bielsa as the new Elland Road chief a few weeks back. Although the results have improved in recent games, the fear of demotion is not over yet. They are currently 16th in the Premier League standings but have fewer games in hand compared to their relegation rivals Everton, Burnley and Watford.
Why Leeds United Should Rope In Hubers
Their pressing game and relentless runs during Bielsa’s tenure resulted in frequent injury setbacks. Skipper Liam Cooper, Diego Llorente and Robin Koch could not build the momentum in the heart of the backline due to persistent fitness woes, and the veteran Argentine was forced to deploy right fullback Luke Ayling as a makeshift centre-half to deal with the crisis. Pascal Struijk had a few decent outings of late, but they need more cover in deep defence to keep pace with fellow mid-table opponents.
Hubers, 25, progressed through the academy ranks of Hannover 96. He later joined the reserves of FC Köln but returned to his boyhood club a year later. The former Germany U18 international represented the Lower Saxony side both at the reserves as well as senior levels over the past four seasons. However, Koln decided to bring him back at RheinEnergieStadion upon the expiration of his Niedersachsenstadion contract.
Despite spending the majority of his time in the lower leagues of Germany, Hubers has done extremely well to attune to the demands of the Bundesliga. He is now a regular in the defensive third with 15 league appearances so far and his emergence has caught the eyes of many including the West Yorkshire giants.
Meanwhile, Koln is aiming for European football and the defender, therefore, has a massive task in these remaining fixtures. He is contracted there until the summer of 2023 and a transfer in the upcoming window should earn him a switch that won’t be on a Bosman for the first time in his career.
Marsch had a brief managerial stint in Germany with RB Leipzig and his contacts in the league might help Leeds win the race ahead of the other suitors. It remains to be seen whether the Whites step up the chase and bolster themselves at the back.