Leeds United transfer losses and big wages will drive nine reinforcements' fates under Daniel Farke

-Credit: (Image: Andrew Kearns - CameraSport via Getty Images)
-Credit: (Image: Andrew Kearns - CameraSport via Getty Images)


Last summer’s loan exodus will be at the forefront of Leeds United minds over the coming weeks. The hundreds of thousands of pounds saved over every week of the past season with those players off the books, are heading in one direction and that’s for Elland Road as it stands.

Nine players who went out on loan last season remain contracted to the Whites and will return for day one of pre-season as it stands. Clauses tied up in those loan moves pertaining to staying at their loan clubs have not been publicised, but if we assume United are under no obligation to keep those deals in place, Daniel Farke has nine reinforcements to manage.

Jeremiah Mullen’s loan to Inverness Caledonian Thistle ended abruptly through injury and he will feed back into the under-21s at Thorp Arch. However, with one year to run on his deal, Leeds may need to act with new terms or a sale this summer.

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Similarly, Darko Gyabi’s Plymouth Argyle stint was ended early by injury and he is likely to want another loan this summer for some meaningful experience. A permanent exit was not out of the question in recent windows and that kind of interest may force United’s hand this summer.

Sam Greenwood may not have found too many goals with Middlesbrough, but he saw a semi-regular stream of starts under Michael Carrick. It was an ideal loan for the youngster to take in the second tier and with two years left to run on his contract, you wonder whether Leeds may look to sell him if Farke cannot find a role for him in his line-up.

Diego Llorente and Marc Roca also have two years left to run on their Leeds deals. Reports in Italy have veered from suggesting the former is nailed on for a permanent Roma move to deriding him for poor performances and shipping him back to West Yorkshire.

There is no future for Llorente in England’s second tier, but like so many on United’s books it is hard to see how they avoid making a loss on his sale, let alone break even or drive a profit. Roca is in a similar boat, though his transfer fee was smaller than his compatriot’s and might be an asset Angus Kinnear can avoid making a loss on.

Brenden Aaronson, Rasmus Kristensen and Max Wober all, remarkably, have another three years to run on the deals they signed last season under Victor Orta. The manner of Wober’s exit last summer makes redemption or reintegration look impossible, especially in the Championship.

Leeds could do with a right-back and a central attacking midfielder, but neither Aaronson nor Kristensen have the credit in the bank to raise confidence in the Championship. As with Wober, the length of their deals does at least give Leeds the breathing space to kick their cans down the road, look for more loans, get their wages off the books and avoid losses on their transfer fees.

Jack Harrison is the final name on the returners’ list. There is no bad blood between him and United. His loan was handled sensitively and sensibly last summer. Evidently, he will have no interest in playing Championship football again, but the noises from Merseyside suggest Everton may be willing to come to the table for a permanent negotiation.

Harrison arrived for around £11m when he finally left Manchester City, so could feasibly be sold for a profit if Paraag Marathe et al don’t roll over for the Premier League side.