By Danny Wright
Leeds United have opened negotiations with Japanese side Gamba Osaka over signing Yosuke Ideguchi, according to a report.
The Yorkshire Evening Post claims that Leeds are looking to snap up Ideguchi, 21, when the transfer window re-opens in January and are aiming to “finalise an agreement” before then.
It is understood that Whites owner Andrea Radrizzani jetted out on a mission to Japan at the end of August after he hired Toshiya Fujita as the club’s head of recruitment for the Asian market.
Director of football Victor Orta teased fans last week when he revealed that Leeds were trying to sign a player from Asia after he has already brought in a large number of foreign talent during the summer window.
Ideguchi, who seems to be the player Orta was on about, is no doubt a talented player but a move for the four-times Japan international would also be likely to put Leeds on the map in Japan and benefit them financially.
He was part of the Gamba Osaka side that qualified for the Asian Champions League last season and has continued his form form this term in the heart of the midfield.
Football Insider Verdict
Ideguchi looks like a very talented player and given his age and reputation, he could become a hit at Elland Road in the future. It may be hard for the Whites to get a work permit for the Japanese international though as he would be yet another central midfielder in a squad that is already bloated in that role. It’s a massive sign that Leeds are moving in the right direction though as Ideguchi would be a good addition on the pitch as well as off it due to the financial impact it may bring. Manchester United’s move for Ji-Sung Park in the past is a show of how a deal like this can be a major success.
In other Leeds United news, Nigel Clough has made a big claim about the Whites after the win against Burton.