Leeds United are closing in on a deal to bring Arnaud Kalimuendo to Elland Road this summer.
What’s the talk?
That’s according to a report by French publication L’Equipe (via Leeds Live), who claim that Victor Orta is now just £4m short in negotiations with Paris Saint-Germain regarding the transfer of the centre-forward – with it being reported that the Spanish director of football had launched an initial €20m (£17m) bid for the 20-year-old last month.
Leeds Live go on to suggest that, with Raphinha now looking set to join Barcelona in a €72m (£61m) deal, Orta should have no trouble in stumping up the extra cash in order to get a deal for the France U21 international over the line – something that means Kalimuendo could now be set to become Jesse Marsch’s seventh signing of the summer window.
Considering just how exciting a prospect Kalimuendo undoubtedly is, the news that Leeds appear close to sealing a deal for the striker this summer is certainly fantastic news for everyone involved with the Whites – not least Marsch himself.
Indeed, over his 34 Ligue 1 appearances while on loan at RC Lens last season, the £16.2m-rated talent was in sensational form, scoring 12 goals and creating three big chances for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 1.8 shots – 0.9 of which hit the target – making 0.6 key passes and completing 0.8 dribbles per game.
Furthermore, according to FBref, the £6.6k-per-week hitman also ranks in the top 28% of centre-forwards in Europe’s big five leagues and European competitions for non-penalty goals per 90, as well as the top 1% for passes completed, the top 19% for progressive carries and the top 11% for progressive passes received over the last 365 days.
As such, with it being clear that the player who Jacek Kulig dubbed a “new wave” talent is exceptional in the final third, fantastic in his progression of the ball and is excellent in involving his fellow attackers in build-up play, it is unsurprising to learn that the 20-year-old is now Orta’s “top target” ahead of 2022/23 – according to James Marshment.
Indeed, if the French youth international is available for as little as £21m, and the striker continues his astonishing development after a potential move to Elland Road, Kalimuendo’s signing could easily prove to be one of the Spaniard’s best captures this summer.
AND in other news: “Sources say..”: Phil Hay reveals big Leeds transfer update, supporters surely buzzing