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Massimo Cellino gives frank interview regarding Leeds United's Sam Byram

Don Revie Statue

The Leeds United owner has again opened up regarding one of his best players.

Leeds United owner Massimo Cellino has been speaking to BBC Radio Leeds about Sam Byram.

The right-sided player is currently in the final year of his contract at Elland Road and with time running out it remains to be seen what the future holds for the 22-year-old.

Byram is one of Leeds’ most talented players – excelling at both right-back and on the wing – but he is yet to accept what Cellino previously put on the table and it looks increasingly likely that he will leave either for a fee in January or on a free transfer the following summer.

Cellino has never been one to shy away from the truth and in his latest interview he is opened up about how he feels about Byram and why he will not pay over the odds in terms of wages just to keep any one player happy.

“In football, the contract must be signed from two parts, our part and the player’s part,” Cellino told the BBC. “I think he is growing as a player, he is still young, and he is thinking…in a way like he is 28, 29. He is still 22 and he is still a baby talking about age in football so he’s got all the future in front of him.

“I let Adam Pearson deal with his agent because I do not want to get emotionally involved. So I said deal with the agent and Adam tried to deal and didn’t get anywhere.”

A number of Leeds’ talented youngsters have put pen to paper on new deals in recent months, but for now Byram is the most high-profile star whose contract is reaching its end and there are likely to be plenty of top flight clubs interested if he does ultimately leave Elland Road.

Still, it is refreshing to hear that Cellino will not be held to ransom and the whole interview has the air of a man who fully understands what it will take to bring Leeds back to the top tale of English football, both on the pitch and off it.

“If we sell the good players we are wasting our time,” Cellino said, before adding the caveat, “I think Leeds pay good wages and I don’t want to start this club doing something that can hurt this club again: paying wages that cannot belong to our reality.”

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