Leeds United manager Paul Heckingbottom has revealed that the next couple of weeks will have a “big impact” on how the club conduct their transfer business in the summer and that he is prepared for shock incomings and outgoings during the window.
With just over a month and a half left to go until the transfer market reopens in the off-season, the former Barnsley boss has admitted that the club are already in full swing for what will be his first window in charge at Elland Road, having joined just after the winter market shut.
Despite the opening date looming ever closer, Heckingbottom insists that his focus is solely on the remaining fixtures, claiming that they will have a massive impact on who stays, who goes and who might come in to the club come the summer.
He has also stated that although he has a good idea over what is needed, this final stretch of the season could throw up some shocks, including other clubs poaching his players.
He told Leeds Live: “In terms of me and my time focus, it’s just on these games and these players because these next few games are going to have a big impact on the decisions we make in the summer.
“That’s not to say there’s not a great deal of work going off in the background about it all. All the time you’re making decisions (about who stays and who goes), all the time, but that’ll change I would have thought.
“Things like that will change between now and the end of the season based on performance. We’ll always have a plan for what we want as an ideal, but then you need to consider lots of different scenarios that might happen going forward.”
Football Insider verdict
Leeds fans will no doubt be hoping to see a more successful summer window than what happened 12 months ago, for despite the vast quantity of players who were brought in, the desired quality was severely lacking. There could well be another overhaul lined up but it will all come down to the money Andrea Radrizzani is willing to splash, as well as who the club can manage to offload from the wage bill, which will also boost the transfer funds available to Heckingbottom. The boss will know who he wants to get rid of but that is a task easier said than done, and as much as he speaks about the opportunity to change his mind, it seems unlikely anyone already on the chopping block will be able to escape the axe.
In other Leeds United transfer news, the club are working on a deal to sign an English centre-back who has been the best in the league this season.