By Pete O’Rourke
Leeds United have been blocked in their bid to sign Ben White from Brighton & Hove Albion permanently, Football Insider has learned.
The Championship giants signed the defender, 21, on a season-long loan deal from the Premier League club during the summer transfer window.
A Leeds source has told Football Insider that the club pushed for the obligation to sign White permanently at the end of the season to be included in the deal.
But Brighton made it clear during recent discussions with United they wanted a straight loan rather than for the deal to be converted into a loan-to-buy transfer.
The Seagulls are convinced the centre-back has the pedigree and potential to mature into a player good enough to thrive in the Premier League rather than just the lower divisions.
White has made a hugely encouraging start to the third loan of his career after previous spells in League One and League Two with Peterborough United and Newport County respectively.
He has started all three of United’s Championship matches alongside Liam Cooper in the centre of defence and made key contributions to the team collecting seven points.
Marcelo Bielsa is a big admirer of the defender, and requested that Leeds explore a loan-to-buy deal in the same way they did in signing Helder Costa from Wolves in a transfer that will become permanent next summer for £15million.