Leeds ‘preparing improved bid’ for USA international midfielder

Leeds United are preparing an improved bid for Red Bull Salzburg midfielder Brenden Aaronson, according to reports.

Aaronson joined Salzburg from Philadelphia Union in January 2021 and has made over 50 appearances for the Austrian club.

He helped the Red Bulls win the league and cup double in 2020/21 and was also part of the USA team that won the inaugural CONCACAF Nations League.

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This season, the 21-year-old has made 26 appearances in all competitions, scoring three and assisting seven.

Aaronson played all but five minutes of Salzburg’s Champions League group stage campaign, helping them finish second and progress to the last 16.

His fine form has prompted interest from Leeds, who are “preparing an improved offer” after having a £15million bid knocked back, as per the Daily Mail.

Salzburg are “reluctant” to lose Aaronson; however, the energetic midfielder is “keen” on a move to the Premier League and wants to play for Marcelo Bielsa.

The USA international has emerged as the Whites’ “number one target” in the January transfer window, the report adds.

Brenden Aaronson created 61 chances in open play in the Austrian Bundesliga in 2021, eight more than any other player. #lufc pic.twitter.com/2oSF7IkH8o

— Jonny Cooper (@JRCooper26) January 19, 2022

Leeds were initially going to spend a limited amount of money this month, prioritising loan deals, but the club’s injury problems could tempt them to splash the cash.

The 15-cap American would fit Bielsa’s ideal profile due to his high intensity running statistics.

Meanwhile, Gabriel Agbonlahor does not think it “makes sense” for Raphinha to sign a new contract at Leeds.

Raphinha made the move to England in 2020. The Whites paid around £17m to sign him from Ligue 1 side Rennes.

Liverpool and Bayern Munich are said to be admirers of him. His current deal at Elland Road is set to expire in 2024.

Agbonlahor has told Football Insider that Raphinha is good enough to be playing in the Champions League.

“I don’t think so, to be honest. I look at Raphinha and he knows he could be playing Champions League football tomorrow, he’s that good.

“It doesn’t make sense for him and his agent to sign on for Leeds, to be honest.

“He’s onto bigger and better things than Leeds can offer him.”

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