Phil Hay believes that Leeds United are very much interested in World Cup star Azzedine Ounahi.
Leeds are certainly not being tight with their money this transfer window, which hasn’t been the case in January windows gone by, with Maximilian Wober already through the door and Georginio Rutter now said to be close to joining.
Victor Orta doesn’t appear to be slowing down either when it comes to transfer activity as they’ve been heavily linked with a move for Ounahi who starred at the World Cup as Morocco reached the semi-finals for the first time.
It has been reported that Ounahi has a price tag of around £39 million which would likely be out of Leeds’ transfer budget after they complete the signing of Rutter, which is said to be around the £3 million mark.
However, Hay does believe that Leeds are becoming tempted to try their luck with Ounahi as he spoke about on The Phil Hay Show.
(24:00) “There’ve been a few reports about Ounahi and from speaking to more and more people and people speaking to us at The Athletic, that is definitely one to keep an eye on I think.
Do Leeds need to sign Ounahi?
“It doesn’t appear to be in dispute at all that Leeds do like him and there does seem to be a temptation to get involved in this one.”
Hay then went on to speak further about Ounahi about how talks are ongoing behind the scenes about the midfielder and whether or not they should or even could move for him.
He said: (25:50) “Although Marsch has been saying, and he was asked about this again today [Thursday] whether or not he’s happy with his options in that particular area and he said yes.
“But although he’s been saying that, there does seem to be a discussion going on in the background about the possibility of going for someone like Ounahi.”
TIF Thoughts on interest in Ounahi…
The midfielder is certainly held in high regard statistically being compared to players such as Frenkie de Jong, Seko Fofana and Gavi (FBRef), so Leeds could well do worse than moving for him this transfer window.
This is because Leeds need a new midfielder having let long-time servant Mateusz Klich depart for DC United, so Marsch is now even closer to injuries giving him a midfield crisis to have to comprehend.
Also, if Ounahi goes on to star in Ligue 1 for the remainder of the season he will likely attract bigger suitors than Leeds who could offer European football and also more money, so moving now could save them a lot of money and hassle in the summer.