Orta targets swoop for Portuguese defender as Leeds Utd aim to repeat genius Willy Gnonto transfer

Victor Orta, Leeds United director of football Credit: Alamy
Victor Orta, Leeds United director of football Credit: Alamy

Leeds United are making plans for signing No 3 of the January transfer window – with a talented Portugal youth international defender next on their wanted list.

The Whites have invested heavily this winter window already, bringing in Georginio Rutter and Maximilan Wober so far. The pair will cost Leeds a combined £53.5m if all bonuses and add-ons are met.

However, the club has also shown a strong tendancy to invest in youth since their promotion to the Premier League in 2020. Indeed, the likes of Sam Greenwood, Crysencio Summerville and Joe Gelhardt have all gone to become first-team stars.

Perhaps their most exciting young signing so far though is Wilfried Gnonto, who arrived over the summer. The Italy forward was picked up for an initial £5.3m from FC Zurich on transfer deadline day.

And the teenager has had a huge impact at Elland Road. Indeed, in seven Premier League appearances so far, he has one goal and two assists to his name.

Assessing his excellent display for Leeds on Friday night, Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville was so wowed by Gnonto that he tipped him up to become a future target for Manchester City.

Now it seems the Whites are looking to tap into that Swiss market once again. And per The Athletic, Leeds director of football Victor Orta is looking to prise Portugal U17 star Diogo Monteiro to Elland Road.

The centre-half plys his trade for Servette, having joined them as a 15-year-old in 2020.

Now 17, he became the third youngsest ever player to debut in the Swiss Super League at just 16 years, one month and nine days.

Now, eagle-eyed Leeds scouts have been alerted to his progress and are looking to bring him to Elland Road.

Leeds keen on Diogo Monteiro

Having amassed over 30 caps at youth levels for Portugal, Monteiro is regarded as one of Swiss football’s hottest prospects.

Servette, though, are keen to keep a check on his development with the player featuring just four times this season.

However, a growing number of scouts have been keeping a close eye on his development. And The Athletic claims Leeds are considering an approach to bring him to Elland Road.

While Monteiro is unlikely to be considered first-team ready just yet, he could sign with one eye on the future. Orta has shown a sharp eye for snaring to Leeds some of the best young talents around. And Monteiro may yet be the next arrival at Elland Road.

Leeds face a crucial run of fixtures as they look to climb the Premier League table. They face Cardiff in the FA Cup third-round replay on Wednesday evening, before tackling Brentford on Sunday. Under-pressure boss Jesse Marsch needs two positive results to lift a recent record of just two wins from 17 games.

READ MORELeeds yet to decide on Joe Gelhardt exit with race down to three as Marsch explains how Rutter will fit in

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