It looks like Leeds United’s Victor Orta may be sharpening up his transfer skills, looking to hook himself a couple of Wolves on permanent transfers, and it is reported that Republic of Ireland international Eunan O’Kane might be the bait to get them to pounce.
Leeds United have been linked with a pair of Wolverhampton defenders, Danny Batth and Matt Doherty, in the press recently, and with the team in search of a replacement for Swansea City’s Kyle Bartley, central defenders are a critical need for the club. And while Batth is no Bartley, he is a proven centre-back at the Championship level. The impending departure of Giuseppe Bellusci, while needed, will also test the depth of the club at centre-back.
Leeds have transferred in a number of wingers, midfielders, and forwards so far this season, with Samu Saiz, Ezgjan Alioski, Mateusz Klich, Caleb Ekuban, Madger Gomes, and Vurnon Anita all joining so far during the summer transfer window. Of those, only Anita could be considered a “defensive” player, and even he prefers to play in central midfield rather than as a fullback.
Of course, with all of the moves that the club has made, there appears to be a surplus of midfielders to fill those spots. Anita and Klich join an already crowded central midfield, where O’Kane split time with captain Liam Bridcutt, budding star Ronaldo Vieira, Kalvin Phillips, and Toumani Diagouraga. Of those players, Diagouraga and Phillips would be probably rated as the lowest performers, but with the new additions, sometimes difficult decisions have to be made.
While O’Kane was a good player for Leeds last season, he might the odd man out and someone that might need to leave to create space and funds for a defensive transfer. Of course, he could have also had his head turned by Wolverhampton, as the club also has new owners and a new recruiting structure, and appear ready to spend to get the club back to the top as well. So it’s not surprising to see O’Kane linked to a move to Wolves, as they are going to be looking for solid Championship performers that might be willing to move or be available to move.
Would a player swap with some cash make sense for both clubs? Maybe. Leeds needs a defender and Wolves need a central midfielder. O’Kane wouldn’t be the first player that most fans would want to leave the club, but the move would make sense from a football perspective. MOT