COMMENT By Dominic Toner
Leeds defender Charlie Taylor looks set for the Elland Road exit doors in the summer as he lets the final months of his contract run down.
The Guardian reported in January that the Whites rejected £7million offers for the left-back, with manager Garry Monk adamant that no senior players were leaving the club.
However, that will be out of his hands in the summer when Taylor becomes a free agent and he is surely set to have plenty of suitors.
Leeds will need to sign a new left-back to replace him and should consider a move for Chelsea ace Nathan Ake, who is a better play than Taylor.
The 22-year-old proved himself in the first half of the season on loan at Premier League side Bournemouth, causing Chelsea manager Antonio Conte to recall him to Stamford Bridge.
He has been unable to force his way into the first team since and Leeds should seize the chance to submit their own loan bid in the summer.
Monk’s side will have a much better leverage if they are in the Premier League next season and a move to Elland Road would surely be an attractive offer for Ake.
Leeds fans may feel that Gaetano Berardi can become the first-choice left-back after some impressive performances their this season, but Monk will need the extra cover and the top-flight experience of Ake would give him the edge.
Taylor was the player of the year last season for Leeds and the quality of the 23-year-old is clear to see, but Ake is a better footballer that would help the side settle in the Premier League.
The Dutchman is a solid defender and also showed his qualities going forward, scoring three goals in 10 appearances.
In other Leeds transfer news, the club are set to offer a new contract to a fringe player.