Leeds United are willing to pay £20 million to sign Ben White on a permanent basis after his sublime loan spell from Brighton and Hove Albion, according to the Sun (29 July, page 51).
To quote this writer’s Leeds-mad friend: ‘Losing White feels like a break-up’.
During a glorious 2019/20 campaign, even grown men were reduced to love-struck schoolkids by arguably the most naturally gifted centre-half to wear that iconic white shirt since a fresh-faced Rio Ferdinand.
White was perhaps the best player in the Championship’s best team, standing head and shoulders above every other second-tier defender with his exceptional reading of the game and a passing range to rival that of even Kalvin ‘Yorkshire Pirlo’ Phillips.
But, with the 22-year-old taking to Instagram to pen an emotional farewell to life at Elland Road, have Leeds fans seen the last of White?
The Sun reports that Brighton have no plans to sell one of the most exciting talents in British football to a club which, on paper at least, could be battling against them for survival next year.
Leeds, for what it’s worth, are willing to pay £20 million to sign White on a permanent basis.
And while Brighton might have set pulses racing up north on Wednesday when they announced the signing of another centre-half, Joel Veltman from Ajax, that does not necessarily mean that White will suddenly be up for sale.
If a Liverpool, a Chelsea or a (shudder) Manchester United come calling, however, the Seagulls could change their stance.
The Sun adds that Leeds will go for Tottenham’s £15 million-rated Juan Foyth if they cannot get their hands on White again.