Done deal: Leeds United crowd favourite Pontus Jansson accepts Whites contract offer
Pontus Jansson will officially become a Leeds United player at the end of the season after the club confirmed that the centre-back has accepted a permanent three-year deal at Elland Road.
The charismatic Swede will take up a contract to the summer of 2020 when his season-long loan from Torino expires in May, securing the future a defender who has been pivotal in Leeds’ fight for promotion to the Premier League.
United are due to pay around £3.5m to Torino to make the deal full-time, a fee which will be paid when Jansson seals a permanent transfer.
The 25-year-old defender intimated that an agreement had been finalised by making a signing gesture to the away end after scoring the winning goal in Wednesday’s 2-1 victory at Blackburn Rovers.
A statement issued by Leeds said: “Leeds United are thrilled to confirm that centre-back Pontus Jansson will join the club on a permanent deal when his loan expires this summer.
“The 25-year-old has agreed a three-year contract, tying him at Elland Road until at least the end of the 2019-20 season.”
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Jansson told LUTV: "I have worked really hard for this, even during the tough months and the tough weeks in Italy. I keep doing that here.
"I'm really happy to be here right now. My goal was to take Leeds back to the Premier League and we are not close but we are on the right way. If we go there it's going to be the biggest memory of my life."
United recruited Jansson from Italy in mid-August, at a time when the club were struggling for form, and his impact in the centre of a consistent defence helped Leeds climb the table rapidly and established a strong bond between the Sweden international and the crowd.
Monk reflected on Jansson’s contribution after the win at Ewood Park by saying: “There are no individuals here. We’re very much a team and very much together. He’s working incredibly well and he’s doing very well but many others are doing the same.
“Pontus knows that but it’s great to see him doing well. I want my players to perform. He’s one of those players who needs a relationship with the fans. I’ve come across players in my time where they need that interaction. He’s one of the them and he feels like it helps him but he’s very much part of the group.”
Leeds’ option to take Jansson permanently from Torino was triggered by his 22nd outing of the season against Nottingham Forest last week.
The Elland Road club insisted on an appearance-related clause as a means of fully assessing the fitness of Jansson, who suffered from knee problems earlier in his career. A minor hamstring strain sustained at Bristol City in September has been his only concern to date.
His 88th-minute header against Blackburn banked another precious Championship win, keeping Leeds on course for the play-offs, but his defensive contribution was equally important, amounting to 15 individual clearances
Confirmation of his intention to sign permanently follows the completion of two transfers on the final day of the January window.
Leeds recruited wingers Alfonso Pedraza and Modou Barrow from Villarreal and Swansea City respectively on half-season loans. Both players have been cleared to make their debuts away at Huddersfield Town on Sunday.
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