Leeds still have a 50-50 chance of signing Charles De Ketelaere this summer despite the player’s preference to join AC Milan, according to Alexandre Braeckman.
Leeds have tabled a new £34million offer for the Belgium striker [90min, July 24] and AC Milan are still unwilling to match that figure and have been unable to agree a fee with Club Brugge.
According to Braeckman, who was speaking to JustJoe Football Show on YouTube, if this deal isn’t agreed between the Belgian and Italian champions, Leeds would have a 50 per cent chance of getting a deal as De Ketelaere is unconvinced by the project. .
“He knows he’s already good enough to play for Milan,” he said. ” It is reality.
“He really believes in himself but if there is no agreement [with Milan] he can’t do anything. He will therefore have two choices, two possibilities.
“Right now it’s staying at Brugge, playing in the Champions League but you know he’ll potentially finish fourth or third in the group. If he’s third he can still play the Europa League, but we know that Brugge aren’t the biggest club to win the Europa League or something like that, they can still play the quarter-finals or something like that.
“Or he could play with Leeds, which is a good platform for him. Because he will be able to learn, he will have time, he will have a good coach, good strategies and a good project. He knows it. But at the same time, the truth is that it’s unclear if he’ll accept that kind of project or challenge.
“It’s hard to say honestly, but never say never.
“If it’s just Leeds or Brugge, maybe he’ll choose Leeds. Honestly, it’s 50-50.
The Leeds fans want De Ketelaere, the board want him and the manager wants him, but if the feeling isn’t reciprocated it’s obviously difficult to get a deal done.
It’s rare that a saga isn’t the fault of the buying clubs, but that’s the case here. There is nothing more Leeds can do to get this deal through as things stand. They hit the asking price, are willing to accommodate personal requests, and acted quickly.
But it makes perfect sense for the player to wait for AC Milan if we’re all being honest with ourselves because they have Champions League football and are a growing club with a great history.
If Milan are unable to complete a deal, it will be interesting to see if a deal can be done, but as Marsch has previously stated, the club are unlikely to wait for a response. They are already looking for alternatives.
The next two weeks before the start of the season are crucial and a striker needs to be in place before that, be it De Ketelaere or someone else.
In other Leeds news, This billionaire-owned PL club wants to spend £25m on a Leeds ace