Leeds United have to break seven-year habit to bring in former McDermott captain

Leeds would have to spend over £1m for the first time since 2006 if they were to sign Matt Mills this summer.

With Brian McDermott at the helm of Leeds United optimism is higher than it has been for a while that the Yorkshire club might finally return to their rightful place among England’s elite in the Barclays Premier League next season.

Considering the wonders he performed at Reading in what is a relatively young managerial career there is little wonder why such excitement is present.

About a month ago I asked if McDermott could bring in any of the players he has worked with previously to Elland Road amid speculation linking him with moves for Ian Harte, Zurab Khizanishvilli, Noel Hunt and others.

So far he has not completed any such signing with a deal to Hunt continually delayed and one for Harte being ruled out completely.

But one player who was on my list of targets who refuses to go away as a potential signing is Matt Mills of Bolton Wanderers.

The former Southampton defender was the Reading captain in McDermott’s first full season in charge at the Madejski Stadium and we bet he regrets ever leaving for his hometown club Leicester City in the summer of 2011.

He fell out with Nigel Pearson at the King Power Stadium and was flogged to newly-relegated Bolton Wanderers last summer.

And on paper you can see why a deal is being mooted.

He was certainly a favourite of McDermott’s at Reading and he spent much of last term injured. But with Bolton losing on-loan star Craig Dawson they will surely want to keep hold of Mills; meaning Leeds may have to spend some money to convince them to part with the 26-year-old.

As reported in the Bolton News no such deal has actually yet been received by The Trotters; who will want to recoup the £2 million sum they paid last summer for the player.

So would Leeds struggle to stump up that cash for the player?

In fact Leeds have not stumped up over £1 million for a player since the unsuccessful buy of Australian international Joel Griffiths from Neuchatel Xamax in 2006; leaving you wondering if they would even have the means to make such a move.

One thing for sure is that Leeds would be doing well to bring him in. He has an excellent working relationship with McDermott and another presence in the heart of defence would certainly benefit the team next season.

But at £2 million it seems this might be to dear a deal for Leeds United to pull off.

Would you like to see Matt Mills at the club next season?

image: © Chris Robertshaw

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