According to multiple sources, Leeds United fans may have to wait to see Yosuke Ideguchi at Elland Road, as despite the commitment of the player, work permit issues may prevent him from being able to play in the UK until next season. The Gamba Osaka midfielder has been rumoured to be set for a transfer to Leeds since September, so while it doesn’t come as a surprise that he might be leaving Japan, it will be disappointing for Leeds to see him forced to go on loan to a club in the European Union.
The Japan international midfielder has yet to secure a UK work permit and while he remains in the future plans of Leeds United, it appears he will have to go on loan to a club in Europe until after the World Cup this summer.
ESPN.co.uk quotes Ideguchi as saying, “Some have said that it is better to wait until after the World Cup. But I want to go my own way and go as soon as possible.” And while both he and the club want him to join up in January to help with Leeds United’s push towards the playoffs and a possible promotion to the Premier League, it sounds like he will be able to join after the summer where he is going to be a key player for Japan in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
While he might be too good for the Spanish second division, Leeds do have a “feeder club” arrangement with Cultural Leonesa in Spain. With the clubs having multiple links, and at least one player on the books of Leeds, Ouasim Buoy, is on loan at the Spanish club already, Leeds might be tempted to stash Ideguchi in Spain until he can get a work permit.
Either way, it appears that Leeds fans will have to wait to see Ideguchi in a Leeds kit for a little while longer.