Revealed: Leeds faced with £200m+ bill after surprise deal agreed
Leeds United demonstrated major ambition in the extended summer window after setting their stall out to establish themselves as a Premier League club.
But it has come at a huge cost, not only in terms of the outlay on transfer fees but on salaries as well.
Leeds spent £100million on new signings ending with the capture of winger Raphinha on the final day of the international window for a fee rising to a potential £21m.
He followed the marquee captures of Rodrigo Moreno, Robin Koch and Diego Llorente, while United also converted the 2019-20 loans of Helder Costa and Illan Meslier into permanent deals.
Leeds also invested heavily in youthful talent as they continued with strengthening the Under-23s ranks that have been transformed during Marcelo Bielsa’s reign.
The salary bill has also rocketed with so many international stars joining on top-tier wages.
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A Leeds source has told Football Insider the club expect to pay in excess of £100m on player wages this season.
That is a huge uplift from their days in the Championship.
According to the club’s most recently-published accounts, United’s wage bill soared to £46.1m for the year ending June 2019 compared to £31m for the previous season.
That took up nearly the entirety of the club’s £48.9m revenues for 2018-19.
Making ends meet in the Premier League are less demanding for clubs benefitting from the vast broadcasting windfalls as well as, in Leeds’ case, big increases in their shirt sponsorship and kit deals.
In total, Leeds are facing a £200m-plus bill for transfers and salaries, although most of the transfer fees are spread across the player’s contract and not frontloaded.
Despite their vast spend, United saw fit to surprisingly hand out-of-contract Gaetano Berardi a new one-year deal yesterday even though injury is likely to sideline him for most of this season.
A class act, and a very generous one, too.
In other Leeds United news, Noel Whelan has reacted to a “shock” Patrick Bamford development.