Kevin Phillips has urged Leeds United to offer Gaetano Berardi a new contract after the defender was ruled out for nine months through injury.
The former Sunderland and West Brom striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, said the club need to “do the right thing” and look after the 31-year-old.
Berardi is facing a long spell on the sidelines after he tore his Anterior Cruciate Ligament in a 3-1 win over Derby County earlier this month.
The injury has put big questions marks over his future with the centre-half out of contract this summer.
The Italian, who celebrated promotion to the Premier League last week, would unlikely be able to return to action until the start of the 2021/22 season.
When asked by Football Insider if he expected the Whites to offer the centre-half a new deal, Phillips said: “It’s such a tough one.
“Where other players have decided not to sign short-term contracts, because they feared injury, he has, so I’d like to see Leeds do the right thing.
“Give him another year, rehab him, get him back fully fit and then get him ready for the end of next season.
“Leeds are obliged to rehab him because he was injured while playing for them so just give him another contract and look after the kid. He has been a good servant for them.”
Berardi featured 25 times for Marcelo Bielsa’s side last season and was an integral part of the Championship winning team.
Leeds have already lost star defender Ben White this summer who has returned to Brighton following a season-long loan at Elland Road.
In other Leeds United news, Alex Bruce has told Football Insider the Whites have been dealt a “kick in the teeth” as fee agreed over exit.
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