By Derek Smithson

Leeds are interested in signing Aston Villa defender Tommy Elphick, according to a report.

The Birmingham Mail claim that the Whites are keen on signing the 29-year-old this summer as they look to bolster their backline.

It is understood that the centre-back could move on in the window as he is no longer guaranteed a starting place following the arrival of John Terry.

However, there report details that Leeds would face serious competition for his signature from Championship rivals Sunderland and Birmingham.

Sunderland are expected to submit a formal bid for Elphick next week if they can offload some of their high-earners, while Harry Redknapp’s Birmingham are also strongly interested.

Elphick could find himself struggling for a starting berth at Villa next year, with the likes of Terry, James Chester and Nathan Baker providing competition.

He began the 2015/16 season captain under former manager Roberto Di Matteo as captain, but that responsibility has been passed on to Terry.

The centre-back made 26 appearances last season for Villa and has previously enjoyed success with Brighton and Bournemouth.

Football Insider verdict:

Leeds are in desperate need of some new centre-backs if they are to mount a promotion charge next season, with the Championship season a physically challenging one. Pontus Jansson and Liam Cooper are the current options in the middle of defence, while versatile ace Gaetanao Berardi could also be used. Elphick would be a good addition to the Whites if he was signed and could make an immediate impact in Thomas Christiansen’s starting line-up. The defender has proven himself in the Championship and would arrive at Elland Road with good know-how.

In other Leeds transfer news, they are plotting a swoop for a Premier League striker.

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