By George & Tom Chellis
As another frenzied transfer deadline day passed without news from Thorp Arch, Leeds fans can reflect on the window with more optimism than in previous years. Under Neil Warnock, the farcical strategy of signing up free agents in the twilight of their careers to long contracts took us nearer to relegation than promotion. It is these errors in judgement that have restricted Brian McDermott’s ability to put his own finishing touches on a squad that has shown some early season promise. Indeed, the wages of those such as David Norris and Danny Pugh remain on our books and money for players is tight. However, with £630 million spent on new players in the Premier League this year and the emergency loan market opening, our attention turns to the unfortunate stars of top tier teams who are unlikely to feature regularly at the Premier League level. Their loss could undoubtedly be our gain, and we look at who McDermott could bring in from the cold to spark life into our promotion push.
Ricardo Vaz Te
Why is he available? Frozen out by Allardyce, the striker went public with his desire to leave this window only to see a move to Norwich fall through.
Why do we want him? The Portuguese striker has a staggering scoring pedigree at Championship level, having bagged 10 in 22 appearances for an underwhelming Barnsley side before netting the vital goals that secured bounce-back promotion for the Hammers (including a late winner in the play-off final). Crucially, Vaz Te would provide some much needed pace in the Leeds forward line and, despite having a tendency to become a passenger when isolated up front, would be a perfect partner to Ross McCormack - standing at 6 ft 2, his height and pace could prove extremely destructive in tandem with our Scottish marksman.
Could we get him? With his services already considered by West Ham’s Premier League rivals, there is no doubt he will get to choose from a wide selection of suitors. Forest, Reading and Leicester are also reportedly interested and ultimately their superior financial strength could be a deal breaker.
Why is he available? Curiously left out of the 25 at Crystal Palace despite only signing permanently this summer.
Why do we want him? The lack of width in the current Leeds United team is no secret, and Brian McDermott’s attempts to bring in Chris Burke on deadline day indicate that this is an area he will undoubtedly try to strengthen. Dobbie is a Championship stalwart with a proven track record for promotion having won consecutive play-off finals with Blackpool and Swansea and, as well as his ability to cross the ball in from wide areas, his knack for stealing goals from midfield could prove very useful given that only four teams have scored fewer goals in the Championship so far this season.
Could we get him? He will undoubtedly look for a move elsewhere and could be a realistic target. However, his affinity for Blackpool coupled with their rise to the top of the table could see him return to the Seasiders on loan for a third time.
Why is he available? Not ready for 1st XI action at Liverpool, Morgan is clearly part of Rodger’s plans for the future having played in European games last season and so may look to secure him regular first team action elsewhere.
Why do we want him? Can play as a striker or as a left winger, Morgan is rising through the ranks at Liverpool and needs regular games to continue his progression. Highly rated by those with connections to Liverpool (Robbie Fowler describing him as ‘one of the best finishers I’ve seen for a long, long time’), he would provide another option up-front and, if Hunt continues to struggle for goals, could be the poacher-style striker we need to turn goalless draws into scrappy
Could we get him? Had a short loan spell at Rotherham last season, Rodgers is
clearly willing to let him learn the ropes away from Anfield and he may not attract as much competition as some of the more experienced Premier League names.
Why is he available? Seemingly out of favour with Paul Lambert, Albrighton has spent far too much time on the bench for such a young talent - it seems Lambert’s
philosophy of youth over experience does not include him.
Why do we want him? An out and out winger, Albrighton brings the pace and flair that we clearly lack. At only 23, his best years are still ahead of him, and he is an exciting player that may just benefit in the long term from a new team when you look at the vast influx of new players at Aston Villa in recent seasons. Scoring the 20,000th goal of the Premier League in the 2011/12 season, he clearly knows how to find the net, a quality that is of high importance in a new recruit to take the pressure off Ross McCormack.
Could we get him? There is no reason why not. Although Marc is of Premier League quality, the chances of a top flight team looking at incoming loans at this stage of the season is becoming more and more unlikely. With no already rumoured clubs interested, his acquisition seems ‘fair game’
We all wait with excitement to see if anyone is brought in on loan in the next few weeks. Regardless of who we bring in, it is paramount that current squad members continue to challenge each other for places in the first XI. One thing is for sure, if you can hit the ground running and contribute to earning points, there are few better places in the Championship to play your football than Elland Road.