Leeds United have recently been linked with a whole host of new names, many of whom can be immediately dismissed.
One rumour that has started to churn around the mill in recent days is that of Chelsea outcast Michy Batshuayi.
The Belgium international has no long-term future at Stamford Bridge and Leeds United have now reportedly been alerted to his availability. At least, that is according to Get French Football News, who suggest he was one of hundreds of names to have been offered to Leeds director of football Victor Orta.
Leeds United being bombarded by a number of French agents in recent days offering their clients to the club – Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea) is one literally 100s of players being proposed to Director of Football Victor Orta, according to sources contacted by Get French Football News.
— Get French Football News (@GFFN) August 4, 2020
With Leeds wanting another striker to compliment Patrick Bamford it is easy to see how this could be a good link. Then you throw in the fact that Marcelo Bielsa previously managed Batshuayi at Marseille and you have a genuine connection.
In fact, Batshuayi has spoken of that relationship in the past.
“He didn’t speak to me, he never spoke to me,” Batshuayi told Onze Mondial in 2018. “And me, it pissed me off because I was doing sick training, I worked like crazy, but he didn’t talk to me. And yet he always took other people to talk to them. In fact, it is all or nothing. Either he picks you up and talks to you for 40 minutes, or he doesn’t talk to you at all.
“But looking back, I tell myself he knew who to do this with. Some needed this support. Me, he understood my personality, he knew that I could draw on my resources.
“I’ll tell you something. One day he told me something shocking. For several months, he hardly spoke to me. And the time he came to talk to me, he just said, ‘When you go out of here, you’re gonna go for 40 million’. He just told me that. In my head, I said to myself, ‘But he’s crazy’. In the end, he was right.”
Clearly it was an interesting dynamic between Bielsa and Batshuayi. The Belgian was clearly not a fan of the stand-offish man-management style of the Argentine. However, he also recognises it helped to forge him as a player. It is also clear that Bielsa rated him, considering his €40m comments.
Indeed, it was reported by Derniere Heure that Bielsa recommended Batshuayi to Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino in 2019.
It was not until after Bielsa left that Batshuayi found his best form, hitting 23 goals in the following campaign and earning a reported (Guardian) £33 million move to Chelsea.
But there is no doubt that the Leeds boss helped him achieve his best in France and perhaps a reunion could be exactly what Batshuayi’s faltering career needs.
Bielsa might even get him back to that hefty transfer valuation once again.