Leeds United defender Leif Davis has seen his move to Bournemouth break down at the final hour.
What’s the story?
Reports in recent days had suggested that the versatile youngster was in advanced talks with the Cherries over a season-long loan move, but that appears to have fallen dead in the water now.
According to Football Insider, a Leeds source has revealed that the plug has been pulled on Davis’ move to the south coast, and that those involved in the discussions do not expect talks to be reignited.
Should Leif Davis be sent on loan?
It’s added that “Marcelo Bielsa had been keen for Davis to get regular senior playing experience rather than be a bit-part figure at Leeds.”
Bielsa will be frustrated
The 21-year-old only had a brief look-in at first-team action in the previous campaign, playing just 31 minutes of football in the top-flight, and predominantly spending his time with the U23s.
But, according to comments previously made by The Athletic’s Phil Hay, Davis is someone who the coaching staff rate highly at Thorp Arch, saying: “He’s very well thought of, is Davis, and he has been since he came, and of the Under-23s, he’s really been as involved as most under Bielsa and has quite often been the go-to player when Bielsa’s needed a left-back.
“The bottom line is that at Leeds, they think an awful lot of Davis, and they think that he’s a bit of a steal for what they paid to sign him from Morecambe.”
Able to play at both left-back and at centre-back, Davis has got the versatility to fill in wherever Bielsa needs him, offering him a dynamic presence down the flank or perhaps someone more “aggressive” in the middle of the defence and someone who is able to play out from the back.
But as Football Insider says about Bielsa’s thoughts on the matter, the crucial thing for Davis’ development in the long-term, is for him to be playing first-team football week-in and week-out, something he probably won’t have at Elland Road after the arrival of Junior Firpo.
A loan in the Championship, and with a team like Bournemouth who will surely look to contend for promotion again, would have done the young defender the world of good, and he would have returned to Yorkshire a better player for that experience.
Instead, he faces the prospect of once again sitting on the side-lines, being someone who’s perhaps now outgrown U23s football, but isn’t quite ready for action at Premier League level.
It’s exactly why Bielsa will be frustrated and even livid that this move has now collapsed.