Report: Orta in talks over last-ditch deal for Leeds ace who’s a ‘nightmare to play against’
Victor Orta remains in talks over a new contract for Leeds United defender Ezgjan Alioski, according to the Mirror.
The Whites Director of Football is speaking with Alioski’s agent in an attempt to broker a last-ditch deal. The North Macedonia international will be a free agent from the end of the month when his current terms expire.
Alioski was all set to leave Elland Road this summer and appeared to say goodbye to fans on the final day of the season. But his proposed move to Galatasaray has fallen through, leaving the 29-year-old facing an uncertain future.
Orta insists Leeds will not improve their previous offer for Alioski to extend his stay in West Yorkshire. However, the Whites’ last contract proposal remains on the table for the left-back to sign.
Marcelo Bielsa does not want to lose the 44-cap international, who is currently at Euro 2020. The Leeds boss believes Alioski enjoyed his best season at Elland Road yet last term, as he helped toward a top-half finish in the club’s return to the Premier League.
But Alioski is likely unsure of putting pen to paper as chances to feature may be restricted next season. United hope to sign a specialist left-back in the summer market and retain Manchester City loanee Jack Harrison permanently.
Bielsa sees Alioski more as a winger than a full-back going forward, despite making 26 of his 36 league outings in defence last term. The energetic dynamo also provided each of his three assists and both of his goals from left-back.
TBR’s view: Leeds must retain Alioski
Leeds were gifted a boost when Alioski saw a move to Galatasaray fall through that Orta must now capitalise on. United may be reluctant to improve their previous offer, but should do more than sit and hope he agrees to sign the terms on the table.
Alioski played a key role in Bielsa’s plans last season and would occupy a prominent place at Leeds next term. Even if the United boss sees the North Macedonian as a winger and hopes to add another option at full-back.
Alioski has proven he can sometimes be a troublesome character on the pitch for opposing sides in the Premier League. That was also a trait of his game that Patrick Bamford warmly praised as they secured Leeds’ promotion last season.
“He’s one of those players that you love to have on your team,” Bamford said, via Leeds Live last year. “But he’s a nightmare to play against.”