Noel Whelan is convinced Leeds United will try and sign Daniel James this summer after coming so close to landing him in January.
The winger underwent an Elland Road medical on deadline day and had agreed terms before Swansea City pulled the plug on the loan-to-buy transfer at the eleventh hour.
James has subsequently made a huge impact for club and country, scoring his first Wales goal amid a series of eyecatching displays for the Swans, with speculation of interest from Premier League clubs.
Whelan is a big admirer of James, 21, and exclusively told Football Insider that Leeds will still be keen to land him in the forthcoming window.
“I think Leeds will be in for him, for sure,” Whelan said. “I rate him highly, he is a fantastic player – amazing pace, good on the ball, mature for his age. I wish I had had half his pace. It scares defenders and James will frighten even very good ones.
“I felt really sorry for Dan James at the end of the January window. The way Swansea behaved was shocking and a disgrace, cruelling taking away the opportunity for him to play for Leeds.
“The player will not want to sign a new contract and that will help Leeds, and other clubs, in the summer. I hope it happens for Leeds, and they will certainly want him, but he’s done so well the price has gone up.”
Leeds agreed a deal worth £10million in January, made up of an initial loan worth £1.5million that would have been converted into a permanent transfer in the summer for a further £8.5million if they secure Premier League promotion.
James has a contract at Swansea that expires in the summer of 2020.