7 free agents Leeds United should consider for the Championship to save the club money this summer | OneFootball

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Football League World

·4 June 2023

7 free agents Leeds United should consider for the Championship to save the club money this summer

Article image:7 free agents Leeds United should consider for the Championship to save the club money this summer

It's been a gruelling end to the 2022/23 season for Leeds United, who are heading back into the EFL after three years in the Premier League.

Leeds' relegation was confirmed following a 4-1 defeat to Tottenham, with the club needing to quickly turn their attention to what lies ahead in the Championship.

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Issues off-field and on-field need addressing before the start date in early August, recruitment being one of them.

Free agents Leeds United could sign in 2023

Player sales and parachute payments mean that Leeds will have cash available for transfers this summer, yet there's going to have to be cautious spending as the club plot their way back to the top table of English football.

With that in mind, we've explored some of the free agent signings Leeds could target:

Jed Steer

Looking at the goalkeeping department at Elland Road, there's an expectation that Illan Meslier will be moving on. What the future holds for Joel Robles, meanwhile, remains to be seen.

Steer, then, could be a good option for Leeds as he heads for the exit door at Aston Villa. The 30-year-old played 19 games in the Championship for Villa in 2018/19 as they won promotion to the Premier League - he was the hero for them throughout the play-off campaign that year, which resulted in a win over Derby County at Wembley.

Do Leeds need a new left-back?

It's been a problem position for Leeds for a number of years now and the club, quite clearly, need an upgrade on Junior Firpo at left-back. Pascal Struijk isn't good enough cover, whilst Leo Hjelde doesn't deserve to be thrust into what could be a difficult season.

There is one standout option:

Ryan Manning

Football League World understands that Leeds are interested in Manning, who will be leaving Swansea City this summer.

He was Swans' Player of the Year in 22/23, having recorded 15 goal contributions from a left-back/wing-back berth.

An attack-minded option to fit into what should, hopefully, be an attacking Leeds side back in the Championship.

Could Leeds re-sign James Milner?

Granted, this ship might've sailed with Leeds crashing out of the Premier League. Brighton and Hove Albion are in pole position to sign the departing Liverpool vice-captain, with Sky Sports confirming it's "all-but done" in early May.

Leeds have the pull of having Milner's heart given they're his boyhood club, yet he clearly still has something to offer in the Premier League. He should be a target for the Whites, albeit maybe one that's unattainable.

Tom Rogic

Rogic has been released by West Brom following the conclusion of the 22/23 campaign. In 20 appearances for the Baggies in the Championship, the 30-year-old scored once and assisted three times.

Whilst he was fairly underwhelming for the Baggies, he was immense for Celtic before that with 46 goals and 49 assists in 272 appearances. If Leeds want a creative, experienced option in midfield, Rogic might just be their man.

Chiedozie Ogbene

Ogbene looks set to be a free agent this summer as his deal with Rotherham United heads towards its final weeks.

The 26-year-old struck eight goals and registered four assists for the Millers last season in the Championship, and could really thrive in a side that might be challenging the sharper end of the table.

Could Leeds sign Ryan Kent?

Ryan Kent is a winger that has been linked with Leeds for a long time now and would be an outstanding signing.

With the 26-year-old leaving Rangers, he's available, yet might be out of Leeds' reach given they've dropped out of the Premier League - the latest suggests that Fenerbahce will beat Burnley and Sheffield United to his signature.

Leeds can hold an interest, but their rivals can offer top-flight football.

David McGoldrick

This is taking things in a slightly different direction from Leeds' recruitment in the past. McGoldrick 35-years-old and has been playing for Derby County in League One over the last 12 months - the Rams' retained list confirmed that the club were "in discussion" with McGoldrick about keeping him around.

Leeds might lose Patrick Bamford and Rodrigo this summer, whilst retaining Joe Gelhardt, Georginio Rutter and Mateo Joseph. An experienced striker, then, should be on the radar. McGoldrick has bags of experience and impressed in both the Championship and Premier League with Sheffield United previously.

McGoldrick struck 22 goals in League One over the course of 22/23, too, proving there's still life in him yet in the EFL despite him coming into the twilight of his career.

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