Leeds United are known to have been searching for a new left-back for some time, and it has now been reported by Graham Smyth of the Yorkshire Evening Post that Junior Firpo of Barcelona is one of the names on director of football Victor Orta’s wishlist.
Junior Firpo Admired by Leeds United
Leeds Searching for a New Left-Back
Leeds had a successful first season back in the Premier League after 16 years away, and they are now looking to consolidate their position in the league. There have been many rumours surrounding who they may be targeting this summer, specifically in midfield and out wide. However, left-back has been an area of weakness for The Whites for some time.
Gjanni Alioski has proven more than an able stand-in, but he is still to commit his future to the Yorkshire club. Regardless, the North Macedonian has been too inconsistent and simply wild at times. Leeds were always going to be looking to upgrade.
Who is Junior Firpo?
Leeds target Junior Firpo is a versatile, attacking left-back who currently plays for Barcelona in La Liga. Having spent five years at Real Betis, the Dominican Republic-born former international for Spain’s youth teams moved to the Nou Camp for £16.5 million in 2019. Firpo was part of the Spanish Under 21 squad that won the European Championships that summer.
Despite only making seven appearances in the league and six in the Champions League last season, interest in Firpo is high. Napoli are among a host of other champions league teams paying close attention to his situation.
Victor Orta’s Secret Wish List
As every Leeds fan experienced last season, trying to guess Orta’s transfer targets is like a blindfolded throw at a dartboard. The acquisitions of Rodrigo, Raphinha, and Diego Llorente all came out of nowhere. The players were signing the papers before a whiff of news became public.
Junior Firpo is the latest in a long list of left-back rumours, but with the Daily Mail reporting that Barcelona are already searching for replacements, this could have legs. It is also suggested that time is precious here, with Graham Smyth saying: “Leeds are hoping Firpo’s future is decided as soon as possible so that, if unsuccessful, they can move onto another of their top targets.” If Firpo is not an option, Leeds will need to move on quickly. But that shouldn’t be a problem.
It is well known that Victor Orta always has a list of players for every position that he would like to sign, at all times. Those who are attainable. Those who are potential future stars. And those who are of such a high standard they are just out of reach for now. But he watches, he waits. And sometimes pulls the perennial rabbit out of the hat. Raphinha was Orta’s magic trick last season, will Firpo be the next one up his sleeve?