Leeds United's 12-1 transfer deficit sounds worse than it is as wait goes on for next signature

-Credit: (Image: Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images)
-Credit: (Image: Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images)


Ten-one against is a scoreline no Leeds United fan craves. Twelve-one is even worse. That’s where the transfer window could be at within a few days. Kristoffer Klaesson and Charlie Cresswell are expected to seal exits from Elland Road, taking it to a dozen out with first-team experience since May’s play-off final.

Some supporters are understandably growing exasperated at what feels like an avalanche of departures with nothing more than, the supreme, Joe Rodon to show for it. On July 7, it may feel very one-sided, but the Whites will hope by the time the season starts or at least by the close of the window, fans will be happy with the summer’s business.

For now, while the quantity of exits may be a cause for concern, Leeds would point to the importance of those who have moved or are moving on. Only one of the 12 mentioned made more than eight league starts in Daniel Farke’s third-placed campaign in 23/24 and that sale generated at least £40m.

READ MORE: Joe Rodon arrives back at Leeds United with a transfer stance for the rest of the window

So, Farke has sanctioned these exits and would argue none of them, barring Archie Gray, have directly weakened his core unit’s strength going into the season. Jamie Shackleton was, of course, invited to stay, but turned down United’s contract offer.

There is an argument Klaesson did better than Karl Darlow in their limited match time last season, while Cresswell would have made for an excellent back-up to Joe Rodon. However, as we learned last season, the 21-year-old has no interest in spending another precious year watching on from the bench.

While the current picture feels a little one-sided, Farke, who has previously stressed the 2024 advantage of being in place for the entire summer, would argue there is no sense in keeping hold of players unlikely to be in his plans. Moving out-of-favour players out of the building as early as possible provides a clearer picture for the manager, a lighter wage bill, a boosted transfer budget and stability for those going away to develop on loan.

With 14 of Farke’s 15 most-used players from last season already underway with United’s pre-season, the German will feel he has his core group in place. The issues coming down the track will be replacing which members of those 14 go on to leave before September 1 and actually improving on some of those who stick around.

Strength on the bench outside that core 14 will need to be bolstered. There are 12 days until the first friendly of pre-season and just 34 until Portsmouth travel to Elland Road for the start of the season.