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Leeds United ‘beat Manchester United to Cody Gakpo deal’

Leeds United ‘beat Manchester United to Cody Gakpo deal’

Leeds United are reportedly in pole position to sign PSV Eindhoven attacker Cody Gakpo despite firm interest from Manchester United.

The 23-year-old was strongly linked with a switch to Old Trafford over the summer, while Arsenal are also believed to have explored the possibility of bringing the Netherlands international to the Premier League.

A recent report claimed that PSV could be forced to sell Gakpo next year due to their financial problems, with the forward potentially leaving in January or at the end of the 2022-23 campaign.

According to The Mirror, Leeds have already agreed personal terms with the forward and are now in discussions with PSV over a £30m deal.

The report claims that Gakpo is ‘desperate to move to England’, and a move to Man United is now unlikely, with the club said to be preparing for a quiet winter window.

Netherlands' Cody Gakpo pictured on September 25, 2022© Reuters

The Dutchman has been in impressive form at club level during the 2022-23 campaign, scoring 12 times and registering 10 assists in 15 appearances in all competitions.

Gakpo has eight goals and six assists in eight league appearances, while he has struck three times and registered one assist in two outings in the group stage of the Europa League.

“Manchester United had reported at the beginning of the transfer window. We were waiting for that a bit,” the attacker recently told PSV TV.

“The signals became more and more positive and at a certain point I thought it might fall in that direction. That option faded a bit and completely last week. We worked the whole window towards it. Until last week I thought I would go to Manchester United.

“I spoke to the national coach (Louis van Gaal). I called him and asked for advice. The advice was clear: that I had to follow my gut feeling, but that a transfer before the World Cup is not really ideal for the player, because then you have to get used to something. I agreed with him.

PSV Eindhoven's Cody Gakpo scores their first goal on September 8, 2022© Reuters

“It was all last minute for me, because until last week I thought I was going to Manchester [United]. Then it was ‘choose another club’ and decide whether I wanted to go there. That is not nice for PSV and also not for me, because it felt rushed.”

The attacker still has four years left to run on his contract with PSV, having only signed an extension in January.

However, the Dutch giants are said to be looking to cash in on the forward following their failure to qualify for the group stage of this season’s Champions League.

PSV beat Monaco in the third qualifying round of the competition but were then eliminated by Rangers, with the Scottish giants recording a 3-2 aggregate victory.

Gakpo has scored 54 goals and registered 43 assists in 150 appearances for PSV since making his debut for the Dutch giants in 2018.

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