By Wayne Veysey

13th May, 2021 | 12:00pm

Sources: Leeds lay groundwork for striker signing as £25m set aside to seal deal

Leeds United are laying the groundwork to recruit a young striker this summer with the potential to be a Premier League star, Football Insider understands.

United chiefs know they require cover and competition for Patrick Bamford, who has remarkably started all 35 of their top-flight matches this season.

A Leeds source has told Football Insider that the club are finalising a shortlist of forward targets capable of slotting into the first team next season.

The profile Marcelo Bielsa is looking for is a versatile forward in the 18-23 age bracket who can play out wide and down the middle, is quick and has an eye for goal.

United will have money to spend this summer but are operating within a budget and would not look to pay more than £20-25million for the player.

One of the club’s targets, as revealed by Football Insider on Wednesday (12th May) is Slavia Prague sensation Abdallah Sima.

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However, there is growing competition for the services of the 19-year-old after his explosive displays in the Europa League this season.

Leeds’ recruitment team led by Victor Orta know they require alternatives to Sima, who seems likely to follow Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal from Slavia to the Premier League.

Bamford has operated as a lone spearhead at Leeds this season, scoring 15 goals and supplying eight assists.

Club-record signing Rodrigo has been used in a deeper role by Bielsa and is regarded as more effective playing behind the centre-forward.

In other news, Leeds United confident top Bielsa target can be signed for £30m after early talks held.