Farke favourite rushing transfer exit before June 30 deadline after January Leeds United interest

-Credit: (Image: Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)
-Credit: (Image: Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)

Defenders will be on Leeds United’s shopping list this summer, but there is one Daniel Farke favourite they won’t be going after in this transfer window. The exit of Luke Ayling, imminent departures of Cody Drameh and Jamie Shackleton, as well as Connor Roberts’s return to Burnley, have decimated Farke’s right-back stock.

Archie Gray and Sam Byram, who is also needed at left-back, are the only recognised options Farke is left with in that corner of the field. On the left, Junior Firpo and Byram have not been without their injury issues in Leeds colours.

Then, in the centre, the end of Joe Rodon’s loan has left a recovering Pascal Struijk holding the fort alongside Charlie Cresswell, who may want to move this summer, Liam Cooper, whose contract expires in two days, and Ethan Ampadu, who some would argue is better in midfield. In short, reinforcements are needed.

READ MORE: Leeds United confirm second loan exit for forgotten man overlooked by Daniel Farke

In January, Ben Godfrey was one of the key targets Farke wanted to bring to Elland Road before Roberts was secured from Turf Moor. The 26-year-old only started one Premier League game for Everton before January 30 last season and was virtually surplus to requirements, hence United’s interest.

Farke was responsible for blooding Godfrey at Norwich City and transforming him into the first-rate defender he has become. The connection was there, the finances were there and the intent was there between the two clubs.

Godfrey would have solved issues on the right and middle of defence. However, United’s luck has a habit of working against them. Sean Dyche would suddenly have need for Godfrey’s versatility and he started nine games on the bounce from January 30.

He was taken off the table and Roberts would be the more natural right-back Leeds secured. Godfrey would have ticked the right boxes for Farke again this summer, especially as he enters the final 12 months of his Everton contract, but the moment has seemingly passed.

The York native finished the season strongly enough to get himself onto the radar of Champions League-bound Atalanta. Serie A’s fourth-place finishers are progressing with a permanent deal that will aid the Toffees in generating profit before their June 30 accounting deadline.

The Whites are not about to compete with a Champions League outfit, but, while there has been no talk about Godfrey going to Leeds in this summer window, we know he is a defender Farke likes. And now we know he’s off the table.