18 July 2024

Burnley identify fans behind offensive banner flown at Etihad Stadium |  Football News | Sky Sports

Leeds United were aggressive in their pursuit of Burnley’s Charlie Taylor and Sheffield United summer signing Luke Thomas, according to Ben Jacobs who spoke to Give Me Sport.

However, the Whites were unable to get a deal sealed for either player in the summer, with the Clarets only having a limited number of left-back options and the Blades able to offer something that Leeds couldn’t: Premier League football.

Ian Maatsen looked destined to return to Turf Moor following the end of his loan spell there – but a permanent deal never materialised in the end and Vincent Kompany’s side didn’t bring in a natural left-back during the summer.

In the end, that could have been the key reason why the Whites never managed to agree a deal to bring their former defender back to Elland Road.

Thomas, meanwhile, had been frozen out at Leicester City with Callum Doyle and James Justin able to operate on the left-hand side.

Sheffield United were arguably in need of addressing their left wing-back department before they recruited Thomas because Enda Stevens had left the club, Rhys Norrington-Davies has spent a lot of time out injured with a serious setback and Max Lowe doesn’t have the best injury record.

What’s the state of play at left-back at Leeds United?

Sam Byram, Junior Firpo and Leo Hjelde can all operate in the left-back area – but Byram’s injury record is iffy, Firpo has been out injured and isn’t the most popular figure at Elland Road and Hjelde isn’t that experienced and was linked with a move away from West Yorkshire in the summer.

With this, the Whites were and still are interested in addressing this area, though they will be consigned to using the free agent market until January when the winter window opens.

Luke Ayling or Djed Spence could potentially operate on the left with both wanting to secure a decent amount of first-team football this term – but Daniel Farke may want to have a more natural option in this area.

What did Ben Jacobs say about Leeds United’s pursuit of Charlie Taylor and Luke Thomas?

With Leeds wanting a left-back, they targeted Taylor who operated mainly as a centre-back last season but is a natural left-back. Thomas, meanwhile, is a left-back but can also be effective as a wing-back.

Speaking about the Whites’ pursuit of the duo, Jacobs said: “Their two main options in the final days and weeks in the window were Luke Thomas at Leicester – multiple approaches were made but Leicester had no desire to loan to a Championship rival, so he ended up going to Sheffield United.

“And Charlie Taylor at Burnley could have returned to Leeds as well, but there was no appetite on the Burnley part either.

“So Leeds tried, they were quite aggressive in their approach, particularly for Thomas, because they knew the urgency. But, they just couldn’t get that deal over the line.”

Will either Charlie Taylor or Luke Thomas rue not making the move to Leeds United?

As long as Thomas is a regular starter at Bramall Lane, he surely won’t regret making the move to the Blades because he will get the chance to operate at a higher level.

Of course, there would have been the chance for him to compete for promotion at Elland Road, but he will want to be operating at the highest level and this is why a switch to South Yorkshire has to be seen as a real positive for him.

Taylor will probably want to seal a return to Elland Road at some point.

But with Burnley only having a limited number of left-back options, Taylor may get the opportunity to play regularly at Turf Moor this term.

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A meeting between the two sides with the most goals in the Football League promised plenty but, instead of a cup cracker it was a drab draw.

Burnley and Ipswich Town will meet again at Turf Moor in 10 days time after a 0-0 stalemate at Portman Road that was short on quality and clear cut chances. For the Clarets, it was a first goalless draw of the season and only the second time they had failed to score, following the 1-0 league reverse at Watford in August.

In truth, Burnley didn’t deserve to win it against an Ipswich side that more than held their own. The home side began the game by far the brighter with George Hirst turning an effort wide on the stretch before Marcus Harness clipped the top of the bar. Sam Morsy also saw a shot well blocked by Clarets debutant Ameen Al-Dakhil as the hosts had the better of the first half chances.

Burnley struggled for rhythm with Jay Rodriguez lifting a shot over and seeing another blocked as the Clarets huffed and puffed in the opening half. They began the second on the front foot with Nathan Tella forcing a good save out of Vaclav Hladky before the Ipswich keeper palmed away a Rodriguez volley.

Vincent Kompany went to his bench and the changes, including a debut for new striker Lyle Foster, helped the Clarets earn control of the contest in the final quarter with another sub – Anass Zaroury – seeing a shot deflected just past the post. Both teams sought a winner in the closing stages with Ipswich asking more of the late questions but the two sides could not be separated.

Kompany on retaining four strikers

 

If and when Obafemi is confirmed, you will have him, Lyle Foster, Jay Rodriguez and Ashley Barnes. Good competition up front. Do you antcipate the latter two being here past Tuesday’s deadline

 

 

Yeah we have competition but everybody is on a different timescale, I think we have five players on loan and the worst moment to fill the void is at the start of a season so we have tried to anticipate a little bit and so we have to see the bigger picture. We didn’t really have huge needs for this winter and for now but I have been in the game long enough know that by the summer we will be having loads of expectations on the squad and it is better to work with them a little bit earlier. That is why it doesn’t matter if the numbers are a little bit bigger.

Kompany on Ekdahl and Foster

Ekdahl is a Swedish international and has a bit more seniority about him but he is still a good age at 24. It is the same things that you can expect from our defenders in that we demand them to have a bit more volume and a bit more running distance. He is comfortable on the ball and along the same lines as what we can expect from Ameen.

Foster, in moments you can see already that he is quite tidy on the ball and has a nice athletic profile.

But we have come this far without anyone so it is a really slow process of integration that we are planning which will take time so the main thing is that they get up to speed and there was a long term perspective (with the January signings).

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