COMMENT By Richard Parks
Andrea Radrizzani has a masterplan. It is a bold one and Leeds United fans should be excited by it.
He intends to use his personal contacts with the agents responsible for the likes of Gareth Bale, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku to access a wealth of global talent for Leeds.
Radrizzani made it clear in a fascinating interview on the Jim White Show on talkSPORT on Tuesday morning that he is keen to imitate the model of Championship leaders Wolves, who have used super-agent Jorge Mendes to recruit some outstanding players from across Europe.
If he gets the clarification he wants from The Football Association, Premier League and EFL, Radrizzani proposes to use his leverage with major European clubs and agents in the same way as Wolves have used Mendes.
If you can’t beat them, join them, is the philosophy of the Italian businessman.
He should be applauded for his vision and ambition, which is a far cry from the penny-pinching and disarray from Leeds owners of the past decade-and-a-half.
Some United fans will be put off by Radrizzani’s name-dropping and will recoil from his desire to cosy up with the agents who siphon off so much money from major transfers.
But the fact is that Mendes, fellow super-agent Mino Raiola and the Stellar Group, whose blue-chip clients include Bale, are some of the game’s most influential power brokers.
Previous Leeds owners would not have even been able to get in the same room as them.
Radrizzani, with his background in TV rights, is comfortable breaking bread with these types and made it clear that he what he will do.
“Obviously these agents they have very deep relationship and influence with the top European clubs because they bring them a lot of players, it’s normal. It’s normal,” the Leeds owner told talkSPORT.
“So, if to facilitate the opportunity to have top, good players from top teams, like this year Wolverhampton, good for them acquire on loan with mandatory option to buy in case of promotion, players from Porto, Atletico Madrid, Monaco, I mean big European clubs and the year before some as well, like Helder Costa who they bought after one year.
“So, if that’s possible I would like to do the same because I have a relationship with Jorge Mendes, with other top agents, Mino Raiola, Stellar, I have a lot of good long-term friendships with top agents in the world so if this is okay, I would like to do the same.”
He added: “If that’s fine, I’m happy to move on, to build a better squad if possible.”
Leeds fans should be thrilled at the boldness from their owner.
In other Leeds United news, it can be revealed that the club have launched a bid to sign a Premier League centre-forward in the form of his life.