The caliber of Leeds rumours has certainly increased, even if we’re yet to see any concrete action. Where we have previous touted Jay Roy Grot and Caleb Ekuban, we’re now circling around a decision on either Vydra or Abel Hernandez. Whatever opinion you hold on either play one must admit that this is a more encouraging sign of intent. With Steve Bruce being touted as a possible alternative to Marcelo Bielsa were that long-negotiated deal not to come off, it does seem to indicate that Andrea Radrizzani has learned a lesson. Though we need to see things actually happen yet…
But how do the finances on these things work? It’s clear that Leeds need to offload a number of players this Summer (Wiedwald, Anita, Sacko, etc) to lighten the wage bill, but these are still financially significant deals unlike the kind we’ve seen in recent years. The rumour is that Leeds are set to beat Galatasaray (who we can all agree we hate) to the signature of Hernandez due to offering more money (hold your gasps, please). We’re due to be offering around £40,000 per week which is a significant lift over our previous wage cap. Though £40k annualised equates to around £2m, so signing Hernandez on a free and giving him £40k/week is the same outlay for the season as signing someone for £1m and paying them £20k. I think we know which is better.
Then it’s staggering that Leeds are considering Vydra as an alternative should Hernandez not come off. Vydra would cost around £10m and presumably require £30k/week or so, making him significantly more expensive. A top player for sure and the kind of caliber we should be aiming to secure, but it seems an expensive acquisition for Leeds. But then good players cost money and if Leeds legitimately have the ambition of escaping this league (upwards), then it won’t be done on the Caleb Ekubans and Jay Roy Grots of this world, it’ll be on players like Hernandez or Vydra.
Madger Gomes has quietly left the club this morning, only 12 months into a 3 year deal that made very little sense. The club offering long contracts to unproven talent didn’t make sense last season and clearly they’ve agreed. He disappears to Ligue 2 never to be seen again. One would expect that there’ll be a flurry more leaving the club in the coming days/weeks, though an obvious problem exists in terms of finding clubs willing to sign our flops. I can’t imagine Felix Wiedwald will be flooded with job offers after the calamitous time he’s spent at Leeds. Though having seen Jack Butland at Elland Road for the first time since his miserable stay here, it does perhaps highlight that a bad stint at Leeds doesn’t always end your career.
On we go. Still wishing, waiting, wondering. Any day now.