Leeds United play waiting game on Pearce as retained list is due to be released

Leeds United are set to publish their retained list today amid a wait to see if left-back Tom Pearce will accept a new contract at Elland Road.

Friday, 18th May 2018, 7:00 am
Updated Friday, 18th May 2018, 9:41 am

Leeds will confirm that Pearce has been offered an improved deal after holding further negotiations with his agent in the past 48 hours.

Pearce, 20, is out of contract at the end of next month and could leave Elland Road for a compensation fee, either negotiated between United and another club or set by tribunal.

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United, however, want to keep the defender and increase his wage after seeing him break into the first team towards the end of the Championship season.

The YEP understands that Leeds had previously intended to release Pearce this summer but reversed that plan and moved to extend his one-year contract following his convincing run of appearances at first-team level.

The former Everton trainee, who Leeds signed after his release from Goodison Park at the age of 16, played five times in the Championship and scored his first league goal in a victory over Barnsley last month.

His emergence has attracted the attention of Premier League sides, including Bournemouth.

Tom Pearce gets the better of Norwich's Harrison Reed.

Pearce’s name will be one of few on United’s retained list with every other first-team player under contract for next season or beyond.

United, however, plan to move on a number of squad members including goalkeeper Felix Wiedwald, midfielder Vurnon Anita, forward Pawel Cibicki and winger Hadi Sacko.

The club, meanwhile, are continuing to work on a deal for Hull City striker Abel Hernandez after making an approach for the out-of-contract Uruguayan.

Hernandez looks likely to leave Hull after four years at the KCOM Stadium and Leeds, whose owner Andrea Radrizzani is looking to raise transfer funds through the sale of a 10 per cent stake in the club, believe they can finance a free transfer despite Hernandez currently earning around £40,000 a week.

Felix Wiedwald.

The forward is understood to be interested in the move to West Yorkshire but his status as a free agent from July 1 has attracted other parties. He made his reputation in England by scoring 22 times as Hull won promotion to the Premier League in 2016. Aston Villa mounted a £20m bid for him soon after but were unable to agree personal terms.

Andy Yiadom, however, has ended talk of a move to Elland Road by agreeing to join Reading on a four-year deal.

The Barnsley defender underwent a medical yesterday before finalising a free transfer to the Madejski Stadium.

Yiadom played under Leeds head coach Paul Heckingbottom at Oakwell and was among the potential recruits identified by United’s boss with his Barnsley contract set to end on June 30.

Leeds, however, did not make a formal offer to him amid doubts about whether the 26-year-old would be needed next season.

United have three right-backs in Luke Ayling, Gaetano Berardi and Lewie Coyle – back at Elland Road after a year on loan with Fleetwood Town – and were reluctant to add another right-back for their squad.