HEAD coach Garry Monk insists Charlie Taylor remains a key part of his first-team plans and ideal long-term vision at Leeds United, despite the left-back having handed in a transfer request that has been rejected.
Star left-back Taylor will see his Whites contract end next summer with the 22-year-old and his agent having no desire to discuss a new deal.
The defender subsequently handed in a transfer request on Sunday which Whites chairman Massimo Cellino rejected, but Monk said he would continue to use Taylor as an integral part of his plans.
Speaking at his first ever Leeds United pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday’s Championship opener at QPR, Monk confirmed Taylor was in firm contention to start and stressed: “I can only speak from the football side of it. For me that’s what I concentrate on.
“Charlie is a Leeds United player and speaking with Charlie and working with Charlie every day, he’s been a pleasure to work with and he’s the type of player that we need to build around.
“We are trying to have a successful season and we have the ambition of reaching the Premier League as a group so we have to keep our best players - I think that’s very clear and I think Charlie is one of them.
“In terms of the football side of it, which is my job to be concerned with, I have no concerns with Charlie whatsoever.
“I think he is very focused - we have just trained this morning and he was excellent in the training and we are working towards the game at the weekend against QPR.
“Charlie is firmly in my plans for that.”
Asked to clarify once more if he wanted Taylor to stay with Leeds, Monk confirmed: “For sure. 100 per cent and I have already made that very clear. And that is the way it is.
“The football side of it is taken care of itself, that’s what I concentrate on and that’s my job to concentrate on that.
“Speculation and everything else that goes with it and whatever is said is for the club to deal with.
“My job is to make sure that the players that are with me that are representing Leeds United are Leeds United players that do it in the right way and they do it with 100 per cent commitment to the club.”