Why Leeds should push ahead with their interest in Lucas Martinez Quarta

According to Argentine source TyC Sports, (Leeds Live), Leeds United can sign River Plate defender Lucas Martinez Quarta for a cut-price deal.

Quarta, who has a release clause of £19.7million, will now be available for a cheaper price as he enters the last year of his River Plate contract. The 24-year-old centre-back has evolved into one of few first names on the team sheet after his rock-solid displays at the back for River Plate this season.

Lucas Martinez Quarta helped River Plate reach the Copa Libertadores finals last season (Getty Images)
Lucas Martinez Quarta in action for River Plate. (Getty Images)

He has featured 19 times out of their overall 23 league matches this term and has kept seven clean sheets in the process, giving a fair idea of the talent that he is. To date, he has featured 96 times for the Argentine giants and has five goals and three assists to his name.

Quarta’s eye-catching displays at River Plate also earned him a national team call-up that saw him make his debut for the senior side back in September last year. Quarta has so far played twice for Argentina both in international friendlies against Chile and Mexico.

Quarta good addition to Leeds backline

Leeds under Bielsa have the best defensive record in Championship this season, which has seen them climb to the top of the league table.

Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa on the touchline. (Getty Images)
Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa on the touchline. (Getty Images)

A defensive partnership involving young loanee Ben White and captain Liam Cooper has conceded a mere 34 goals from 43 league matches, helping stay atop. However, White is expected to return to his parent club Brighton and Hove Albion when the season ends, leaving them with just Pascal Struijk and Oliver Casey in their ranks.

This will hurt the side in their pursuit to stay in the top-flight next season if they earn promotion. Moreover, Berardi will turn 32 next month.

The Swiss defender has started to show signs of ageing as it is clear from his mere 11 starts in the league this term under Bielsa. Struijk and Casey, on the other hand, just got promoted to the senior side last summer.

Both of them have together managed just three league appearances and clearly lack big-game experience. Considering all this, this seems like the best opportunity for Leeds to land Quarta, as he will be available for a far cheaper price at the moment.

Leeds United defender Gaetano Berardi in action. (Getty Images)
Leeds United defender Gaetano Berardi will turn 32 next month. (Getty Images)

Having proved himself already at River Plate, he could, thus, prove to be a valuable addition to Leeds next season if they manage to achieve promotion to the top-flight.

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Verdict

Leeds United are clearly in need of some established defenders if they lose White. Having played for both club and country at the highest level, Quarta will offer Bielsa a good option next season. Moreover, he is just 24 and has plenty of football left in him. Thus, Leeds should push ahead with their interest in him and land him soon.

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