By Richard Parks
Leeds United fans have taken to Twitter to express their dissatisfaction after it emerged at the weekend that the club are close to signing Carpi striker Jerry Mbakogu.
The Serie B club’s general manager Matteo Scali has admitted to Italian outlet Gazzetta Dello Sport that the Yorkshire giants are working on a deal to land centre-forward Mbakogu, 25, in the summer transfer window and that a deal is now advanced.
“There’s a gentleman agreement with Leeds for June,” Scali said, as quoted by Gazzetta.
This comes after widespread speculation, including in Gazza Mercato, that United have set aside £4.4million to sign Mbakogu in the upcoming window in what would be the highest fee they have paid for a striker since their Premier League days.
It is said that intermediary Lorenzo Tonetti, who is a close ally of Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani and frequently posts images on Instagram about the club and its activities, is spearheading the club’s pursuit of the player.
However, Leeds must overcome red tape, including securing a work permit for the Nigerian, to get the deal done.
United fans are unconvinced that Mbakogu is the striker they need to ignite a team that slipped to 11th in the Championship following the weekend defeat to Sheffield United.
Here is a selection of their messages on Twitter:
Jerry Mbakogu lol 4 million
— Micky Padge (@mickipadgett) February 9, 2018
@andrearadri Mbakogu is another Orta mistake waiting to happen…. especially at 4M+ Better options…… better players. There has to be something wrong when an ordinary fan’s first response is “Oh no!”…. Orta’s judgement is appalling.
— Brixham-Seaboat © (@BrixhamSeaboat) February 8, 2018
Don’t know who wrote it but its utter tosh, he’s got huge potential its clear they are some fan that just quickly checked his stats this season. He’s worth what leeds could pay for him
— James Howson (@BigJimmy_V) February 9, 2018
— Daryl (@Dazelar29) February 8, 2018
Ask PH first if he feels this is a striker he wants in his team. He may want someone else….
— L33D5 UN1T3D (@LeeTate764) February 8, 2018
This type of signing seems to be the exact types of signing that Radrizanni said we wouldn’t make next season… We need players with experience of our league!
— Josh Hobbs (@JoshAHobbs) February 8, 2018
Waste of money imo
— Joe (@hxmer99) February 8, 2018
How did they know heck wanted him?
— jayjay82 (@jwh1982) February 8, 2018
Unless he’s diving in there for a studs up to the ankle challenge there I don’t want him ????????♀️
— Mikey Murray (@mikeyLUFC94) February 8, 2018
Scouts from the Yorkshire giants were present to watch Mbakogu score for the second tier Italian club in their 2-1 win against Spezia Calcio last month to take his haul for the campaign to eight goals in 21 appearances in all competitions.
The Nigerian has scored 37 goals in 126 Carpi matches as well as supplied 22 assists.