One of Leeds United’s main target’s this summer was to bring in a new striker. Yesterday, they did that. Patrick Bamford arrived from Middlesbrough in a deal worth £7 million. It finally fills a gap in the Leeds team that has been present since Chris Wood headed to Burnley last summer. But Leeds had other choices before this. Matej Vydra was the subject of a bid, but the first man in the queue was Hull City striker Abel Hernandez.
Leeds offered the Uruguayan a deal when it became clear he was not signing a new contract with the Tigers and became a free agent. It seemed to be a straightforward deal, until Hernandez made his wage demands.
Just like with a failed £20 million move to Aston Villa in 2016, his salary became an issue and the interest in signing Hernandez fell away as a consequence.
In the end, it appeared he was off to CSKA Moscow. But, that deal has now fallen through, for different reasons. As reported by News.ru, the striker has failed his medical at CSKA.
Hernandez missed most of last season with an Achilles injury and it is reported this has out CSKA off a move after the first physical examination.
There were other issues as well. The report claims Hernandez wanted a five-year deal, as opposed to the three-year contract on offer. His salary was due to be €3 million (£2.7m) per calendar year, with a one-time signing bonus of €4.5 million (£4 million). That amounts to weekly wages of around £52,000. That sort of money was always going to be too much for Leeds, especially if there are question marks over his fitness.
The fact is, if the much wealthier CSKA do not think they can gamble on his fitness, then Leeds would have been mad to do so.