Exclusive: Whelan confident of Leeds 'statement signing' today after major development


Noel Whelan is confident of Leeds United sealing a deadline-day “statement signing” after major progress in their Eddie Nketiah pursuit.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-United striker believes there is no way United will let the cut-off pass without adding to their attacking ranks.

Whelan believes last Sunday’s opening-day 3-1 Championship win over Bristol City has only partly put to bed fears over the strength of the squad.

He is urging Leeds to not only sign Nketiah on loan from Arsenal, after a breakthrough in talks overnight, but also finalise the permanent capture of Liverpool winger Ryan Kent.

“The noises coming out of Leeds are positive, but there needs to be a statement signing, a player who can make the difference,” Whelan told Football Insider. “They have got to get that player and I’m confident they will.

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“You can’t sell Kemar Roofe and not bring in a player who is at least the same level. Not when you want to win promotion to the Premier League.

“The Ryan Kent one’s been rumbling on for a while. He would be a brilliant signing. Can Leeds get two forwards in, or can they get one? It would be ideal if we could get two and not only replace Roofe, but end the window much stronger than we started it.

“You look at the bench against Bristol City and it wasn’t strong enough even though we had [Helder] Costa and [Ezgjan] Alioski on it. It wasn’t a bench where you go ‘wow’.”

Roofe was sold to Anderlecht at the start of the week for around £6million and Leeds have held extensive talks over signing Nketiah and Kent, with the former looking very likely to sign.

In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that the club are close to signing a £35,000-a-week Premier League player after overnight breakthrough.