Why Leeds United must revive their interest in Cyle Larin
The 25-year-old started out at Canadian outfit Sigma FC and made the jump to Connecticut Huskies in the US, before joining MLS outfit Orlando City in 2015. He featured 88 times for the club, bagging 44 goals and 8 assists.
In January 2018, Larin signed for Turkish giants Besiktas. He featured just 26 times for the club, scoring 8 goals, before he was loaned out to Belgian outfit Zulte Waregem. He had an impressive stint at the club, which is why Leeds should look to rekindle their interest in him.
Leeds in need of firepower up front
With promotion in sight, Leeds need to start preparing for life in the top-flight. And strengthening the centre-forward department in the summer transfer window should be a top priority for manager Marcelo Bielsa.
At the moment, Leeds United just have two strikers on their books in Patrick Bamford and Tyler Roberts. While the former has performed admirably, netting 15 goals in the English second division, the latter hasn’t been used regularly by the manager. Indeed, Roberts has featured just 18 times in the Championship, scoring only three goals.
Jean-Kevin Augustin, who had been signed on loan in January, has returned to parent club RB Leipzig even before the season has completed. Given the lack of options in the attacking department, it goes without saying that Leeds need a new centre-forward come summer, irrespective of whether they get promoted or not.
Besiktas forward Larin, to that end, would be a viable option for the club. The 25-year-old had been a prolific goalscorer during his time in MLS with Orlando City. And while his form did dip a little at Besiktas, he has recovered his touch during his loan spell at Zulte Waregem.
Larin finished the 2019/20 campaign with a handy return of 9 goals and 11 assists from 33 matches across all competitions. He also has international experience, having featured 31 times for the Canadian national team, in which he found the back of the on 9 occasions.
Signing Larin would add some much-needed depth at the top of the attack for Leeds. And if he is able to carry forward the same form, he can grow into a key player for Marcelo Bielsa’s side.
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It is no secret that Leeds are lightweight when it comes to the striker department. And that is one area Bielsa & co. must strengthen before next season. Having said that, signing Larin would serve the promotion contenders well. The Canadian has been in good form and at 25, has his best years ahead of him. More importantly, he would add quality and depth to Leeds’ frontline.