Kevin Phillips has claimed Southampton striker Che Adams would be a “perfect” signing for Leeds United this month.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former England striker hailed Adams as an “excellent” front man who could be the difference between Leeds going up and not.

Leeds have made a concerted bid to prise Adams from Southampton but Ralph Hasenhuttl has so far refused to let him go.

United are considering alternative centre-forward options but a club source has said Adams talks are continuing and the deal is not yet dead in the water.

Asked by Football Insider if Adams would be the “perfect” signing for Leeds, Phillips replied: “He would [be perfect]. I watched a lot of Che at Birmingham and his development has been excellent.

“Good player, powerful, strong, can score goals, very surprised he hasn’t kicked on at Southampton but sometimes it can be difficult in the Premier League and obviously he’s against Danny Ings.

“I think any Championship side that’s looking for promotion, like West Brom with Dwight Gayle if they could get him back, if Che Adams went to Leeds, that could be the difference between them going up or not going up, so I think he’d be a good addition, yeah.”

Football Insider first broke the news of Leeds’ interest in Adams on 20 December and they are in pole position to sign him on loan if Southampton allow him to leave by the 31 January cut-off.

That will depend upon Saints manager Hasenhuttl changing his stance at his media conference that he has no plans to let the 23-year-old go.

In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that a Premier League club have granted permission for a defender to head to Thorp Arch after talks.