Report: Empoli determined to sign much-maligned Giuseppe Bellusci, he's their top target

Leeds United's Giuseppe Bellusci

Empoli are reportedly keen to land Leeds United defender Giuseppe Bellusci.

Leeds United's Giuseppe BellusciLeeds United's Giuseppe Bellusci

According to Sky Italia's Gianluca Di Marzio, Empoli have made Leeds United's Giuseppe Bellusci their top target as Lorenzo Tonelli has joined Napoli.

Bellusci, 26, joined Leeds from Catania back in 2014, initially on loan before completing a permanent deal at Elland Road - and it's fair to say that he's endured an up-and-down time in West Yorkshire.

Leeds' Giuseppe Bellusci

The Italian centre back is capable of being a rock in the Leeds defence, and had a run of fine performances under Steve Evans this past season where he looked like he was reaching his best form for the club.

However, much like the rest of his time at Leeds, Bellusci again started producing comical errors, and his inconsistent nature has made him a much-maligned figure amongst Whites supporters.

Watford's Nordin Amrabat in action with Leeds United's Giuseppe Bellusci

New manager Garry Monk may want to take a look at Bellusci, but Leeds could receive a transfer offer for the centre back in the coming days or weeks.

Sky Italia's Gianluca Di Marzio reports that Empoli are set on signing Bellusci this summer, as they want a new defender to replace Lorenzo Tonelli, who has signed for Serie A rivals Napoli.

Giuseppe Bellusci (L) celebrates with Tommaso Bianchi after scoring the first goal for Leeds United

Bellusci, formerly of Ascoli and Catania, may relish a return to his native Italy this summer if Empoli do come calling, which seems likely as the report suggests he is Empoli's top target to fill Tonelli's role in the heart of defence.

Leeds only have Sol Bamba and Liam Cooper as their other options in the heart of defence, so may look to make sure that they have a replacement lined up before allowing Bellusci to leave, but after a topsy-turvy two years at Elland Road, Bellusci's time at Leeds could be coming to an end.

Would you like to see Bellusci leave Leeds this summer?

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch