Leeds stance on signing Azzedine Ounahi after opening Juventus talks

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Leeds remain interested in a deal for Angers midfielder Azzedine Ounahi – despite contact with Juventus over a move for USMNT star Weston McKennie. The Whites are believed to be big admirers of Morocco’s World Cup maestro and his arrival at Elland Road would be hugely popular amongst supporters, who have continued to campaign for his arrival on social media since links to Ounahi initially surfaced earlier in the window.

But a transfer still looks complicated due to Angers’ disastrous Ligue 1 season as they remain cemented to the foot of the table in France.

Because of their desperate bid for survival, Angers are telling interested parties that they require Ounahi to be loaned back in order to strike an agreement.

Leeds do not want to loan Ounahi back to Angers and instead they would like to land the player immediately on a permanent deal.

They are currently the highest bidders having tabled a proposal worth a reported £19.5million for the 22-year-old, who is yet to commit to the idea of a move to Elland Road.

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In the meantime, Leeds are now exploring the conditions of a swoop for McKennie as he could be available this month as Juventus continue to combat a series of issues away from the field.

Other Premier League clubs including Bournemouth, Tottenham and Arsenal have also been linked with the energetic midfielder but thus far, none of those clubs are yet to seriously explore a transfer.

As reported by Fabrizio Romano, Leeds are still keen on Ounahi and will continue to monitor his situation as they look into a move for McKennie.

Napoli are also at the table for Ounahi and are prepared to loan him back to Angers for the remainder of the season.

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The Serie A leaders can also offer Champions League football which is something of understandable interest to Ounahi.

Speaking to Angers’ website, Ounahi made it clear that the sporting project will be integral to his decision when selecting his next club.

He said earlier in the transfer window: “That’s what I told the President. The sports project comes first. I don’t have a favourite championship, I don’t have an ideal destination, I look above all at the sporting project. In the Club where I will go, I still have to progress to show my qualities.

“To be clear with everyone, I have no preference for this or that championship because I look at the sporting project, the interest of the club but also my own. If there is a real sports project, that’s where I’ll go.”

McKennie is understood to be keen on moving to the Premier League and there is long-standing interest from England in his services.

His current contract at Juventus is not due to expire until the summer of 2025 which would strengthen the Old Lady’s position over any sale.

But injuries have once again highlighted that Leeds are in desperate need of midfield reinforcements with Marsch currently incredibly light on the ground in that department.

As it stands, the American tactician only has Tyler Adams, Marc Roca, Adams, Darko Gyabi and Sam Greenwood available for selection.

McKennie would also be set to team up with three compatriots in Marsch, Adams and Brenden Aaronson if he was to make the switch to Elland Road – something that could work in Leeds’ favour in their bid to sign the player.

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