Another day, another transfer story. Is this really Leeds?
Can't speak highly enough of Vurnon Anita as a professional. Played a huge role last season. Would be an excellent signing for Leeds. #NUFC— David O'Neill (@DavieONeill) July 6, 2017
The Yorkshire Evening Post is reporting that Leeds United are interested in bringing in Dutch midfielder Vurnon Anita. Anita is currently without a club, having not received a new contract from Newcastle after his deal ran out on June 30th.
Anita began his career in the Netherlands with Dutch giants Ajax. Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Martin Jol brought him into the first team at the club in the 2009-10 season. He appeared in over 150 games in all competitions with the Amsterdam side, and transferred to Newcastle United in August of 2012 for a reported fee of £6.7 million. Anita has gone on to appear over 150 times for the Tyneside club in the past five years. He will probably not win a golden boot anytime soon, as he has scored only 10 goals in his career, and only three in England with Newcastle.
My understanding is that if Anita joins Leeds, he'll be signed predominantly as a full-back #lufc— Tom Barclay (@TomBarclay_) July 6, 2017
The 28 year-old Anita is a versatile player, having played as both a full-back and defensive midfielder. And while he’s not going to set the world on fire with his goal scoring any time soon, a utility man would be a good pick up on a free transfer. While he has played in the midfield or at right-back the most for Newcastle, he broke through at Ajax playing left-back. And while he’s not necessarily the long-term solution at any of the positions he can play, adding in a player that can cover those positions is a good bit of business.
While the club awaits the “big” transfer news surrounding Samu Saiz or Ezgjan Alioski, this kind of signing will help the team move forward. Sending promising young fullback Lewie Coyle out on loan to get first team minutes and bringing in a veteran on a free to cover may seem a bit silly, but Coyle isn’t going to get better sitting on the bench, and someone like Anita can fill in if Luke Ayling or Gaetano Berardi can’t go. Make no mistake, these are the kinds of moves that proper football clubs make.