Why Leeds United need to return for Nahitan Nandez
According to Leeds Live, Leeds United saw their offer for Nahitan Nandez sent back due to it not meeting the Cagliari’s valuation of the player. Earlier it was reported that Bielsa wanted to bring in Nandez as he thought he would be a good fit at the club.
Nahitan Nandez started his professional career with Penarol in his native Uruguay. He made 87 appearances in all competitions over the course of five seasons at his boyhood club and was a part of the squad that won the 2015-16 Uruguayan Primera Division title.
The 24-year-old established himself as one of the best central midfielders in South America following his move to Boca Juniors, where he impressed in the Copa Libertadores and also won the Argentine Primera Division crown in 2017-18.
Nandez’s impressive form in Argentina earned him a move to Europe with Italian club Cagliari in 2019. The Uruguayan star went on to enjoy a successful debut season in the Serie A, registering 2 goals and 4 assists in 35 appearances last term.
A full international for Uruguay since 2015, Nandez has accumulated 35 caps, representing his nation at the 2018 FIFA World Cup and also in 2019 Copa America.
Nandez will add quality and depth to Leeds’ midfield
Mateusz Klich has made a stunning start to life in the Premier League, scoring against Liverpool and Fulham in the opening weeks. The Pole was one of the key cogs in Marcelo Bielsa’s midfield engine as the Whites won the Championship title last term.
However, it is worth pointing out that Leeds currently do not have a quality alternative to Klich in the No.8 role in Bielsa’s preferred 4-1-4-1 system. Stuart Dallas, who is essentially a winger by trade, occasionally played as a central midfielder in the second-tier last season but using makeshift options in such crucial positions might not be a good idea in the Premier League.
Leeds, of course, have promising youngsters like Mateusz Bogusz, Robbie Gotts and Jamie Shackleton competing for places in the midfield. But it goes without saying that they need more experienced cover to cope with the rigours of a 38-game season, not to mention the challenge of participating in the cup competitions.
Nahitan Nandez, to that end, presents a lucrative option for Leeds United in the summer window, having proven his worth as a quality central midfielder in the Italian Serie A.
The 24-year-old’s presence in the ranks at Elland Road would reduce the burden on Klich, while also ensuring healthy competition for places to facilitate squad rotation.
- Why Leeds United should take a punt on Jhon Chancellor in January
- Why Leeds United should eye a cut-price swoop for Fabian Schar in January
With close to 200 club career appearances under his belt, Nahitan Nandez looks more than capable of adding more depth, quality and experience to Leeds United’s midfield. The Uruguayan still has his best years ahead of him at 24, so he’s definitely worth the £32.3 million release clause Cagliari have put in his contract.