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Report: Leeds now want to sign 'rare' talent in midfield after Roca deal, club reluctant to sell him

Leeds United want Romeo Lavia of Manchester City but face competition from Premier League rivals Southampton.

The Athletic report that the pair are set to battle it out to try to sign the talented midfielder from the Etihad Stadium.

City’s interest in Leeds talisman Kalvin Phillips is also tied up in the process, with Pep Guardiola’s side hopeful that Lavia could offset some of the cost of the England international.

Perhaps Lavia could be Phillips’ replacement at Elland Road, although there is still work to be done before the midfielder joins the champions.

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Leeds want Lavia

Lavia is a young player who plenty of Leeds fans may not know much about.

But former City skipper Vincent Kompany does and he has been impressed by what he has seen from the 18-year-old midfielder.

He said: “He picked up a lot and showed aggressive ball recovery and was also calm on the ball. You need that in that position. Lavia has what Pep Guardiola is looking for.

“Normally, as a young player, you only have one chance in a million to breakthrough immediately at Manchester City, but Lavia can make that happen. He’s such a rare player.”

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Lavia started this season in the League Cup win against Wycombe Wanderers, so he does have some senior City experience to his name.

City are reluctant to sell him, but if it helps them get the Phillips deal over the line then they look set to do it.

Jesse Marsch’s Leeds are all set to sign Marc Roca from Bayern Munich and Lavia could well join him in his midfield next season.

Losing Phillips would be a major blow, but it seems that Leeds do have a plan in place, although taking a gamble on such a young player would be a risk.

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