Leeds United has begun celebrating staying up in the Premier League in earnest today by sealing a deal for talented Red Bull Salzburg and United States international attacking midfielder Brenden Aaronson.
The 21-year-old native of New Jersey has rapidly progressed after emerging through the vaunted youth ranks of MLS outfit Philadelphia Union, earning him a move to Salzburg in 2020 where he linked up with current Leeds boss Jesse Marsch.
Aaronson hit the ground running in Austria, hitting 5-goals and adding 5-assists in his debut season, and produced similar numbers this term while also establishing himself as a regular contributor on the scoresheet for the USMNT, hitting 5-goals in 18-caps for the stars and stripes.
With Marsch now set to build on his platform that allowed Leeds to avoid dropping down to the Championship, the Elland Road side will look to strengthen their ranks but unfortunately may have to lose a few star names in the process as well.
Official statement soon: Brenden Aaronson joins Leeds, deal set to be signed as expected. £28m fee and contracts now almost ready. ⚪️🇺🇸 #LUFC
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) May 25, 2022
As reported by Tom Bogert (the Guardian, FourFourTwo) as well as transfer insider Fabrizio Romano, Aaronson is set to complete his medical this week ahead of completing a ~£30million move to Leeds to reunite with Marsch amid growing concerns that the club could be set to lose one – if not both – of Raphinha and Jack Harrison.
Raphinha has long been sought after by the likes of Barcelona and Bayern Munich this season, while Jack Harrison may now have Newcastle United drawing their crosshairs in his direction as the Magpies look to reinforce Eddie Howe’s first-team squad.
Though Aaronson was predominately utilized in a central attacking role at RBS, he does have experience on the flanks for both club and country, but a deal for him may not necessarily mean the guaranteed departure of the aforementioned Raphinha or Harrison.
With Marsch utilizing a 4-2-3-1 of late at Leeds, Aaronson could well slot in right behind key center forward Patrick Bamford while both Raphinha and Harrison are deployed on either flank.
It remains unclear if Leeds could lose one or both wingers, but the fact that Leeds is looking for long-term solutions that are currently considered to be at the level the club need to rebound from a disappointing 2021-22 is encouraging.