Radrizzani hits back at Leeds transfer barbs, names two Orta signings who are gems
By Richard Parks
Andrea Radrizzani has named Samuel Saiz and Ezgjan Alioski as two Victor Orta signings who have thrived at Leeds United in a robust defence of the club’s transfer policy.
United’s transfer activity has been heavily criticised by pundits and fans for failing to improve on last season’s results despite a blizzard of new arrivals both last summer and in the recent January window.
But Radrizzani explained that Leeds’ financial position left them with no choice but to focus on the international market and attempting to find unpolished gems who would cost a fraction of their equivalents in England.
The owner hailed 2017 summer arrivals Saiz and Alioski as proof of Orta’s ability at spotting potential stars.
“The financial condition of the club did not allow us the possibility to buy top, mature players for the Championship in England because the prices are too high,” said Radrizzani to the Yorkshire Evening Post. “This year it was necessary for us to have international recruitment.
“There was no other way we could have players with the quality of Samuel Saiz or Gjanni Alioski from the local market. We follow the strategy because we don’t have any other choice but from now on we will be far more focused on the domestic market, particularly the young players.”
Saiz was plucked from Spanish second tier side Huesca for around £3million and has lit up the Championship in a season in which he has arguably been Leeds’ outstanding player, scoring nine goals and supplying five assists before being hit with a six-match spitting ban.
Alioski was signed from Swiss top-tier outfit Lugano for around £1.5million and has started more league matches than any other Leeds player this season, returning five goals and five assists.
New manager Paul Heckingbottom will take charge of his first match when United travel to Sheffield United for Saturday lunchtime’s Yorkshire derby at Bramall Lane.
In other Leeds news, the club have been hit by yet another shattering senior player injury blow.
Don’t miss out on breaking and exclusive Leeds news by clicking here for our brilliant 24/7 updates on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.