Palermo are confident Leeds United will pay up to sign Sol Bamba permanently this summer.
Italian side Palermo are expecting Leeds United to pay up to sign Sol Bamba permanently, their outgoing sporting director has revealed.
Franco Ceravolo left his post at Palermo this week, and spoke to Italian website Tuttomercatoweb about a variety of topics amid his mutual departure.
Among them was Sol Bamba, one of the players Palermo decided to loan out in January. After being signed from Turkish side Trabzonspor in the summer, he had played just one game in the first half of the season for the Serie A side.
Ceravolo was hopeful of Palermo getting a fee for the centre-back, and resultantly being able to reflect on a decent bit of business.
He said: "Bamba? We signed him on a free, today is the captain of Leeds and soon Palermo will get a capital gain."
That is of course one way to look at and spin a piece of summer recruitment which did not work out for the club. He is clearly confident Leeds will pay up to sign Bamba and the Italian side can cash in.
Bamba has been a big success at Leeds United, a key figure in central defence and filling in frequently for Liam Cooper as captain.
Leeds head coach Neil Redfearn described keeping Bamba at the club as a 'no-brainer', reported the Yorkshire Evening Post this week. So far no official agreement to sign the Ivorian on a permanent basis has been announced.
This would of course be dependent on the club avoiding a transfer embargo this summer as they had in January preventing them from signing players, restricted to loan deals only.
Ceravolo believes Palermo did the right thing to loan Bamba out, when he could have kept him at the club or tried to sell him on in January. He said: "The hardest thing was to fix the players, sometimes in football is more important than selling or buying. "