Sam Allardyce has cast doubt over Liam Bridcutt’s future at Leeds United by admitting he would rather sell the midfielder to Brighton than allow him to stay at Elland Road next month.
The Sunderland manager appeared to warn Bridcutt against extending his loan with United by saying Bridcutt’s career “needs to get back on track and realistically his career is not at Leeds and not here.”
Bridcutt is out of favour at the Stadium of Light and the Premier League club sent him on loan to Elland Road on an emergency basis last month.
Leeds head coach Steve Evans claimed this week that an agreement was in place to extend that deal to the end of the season amid strong rumours that Brighton - the Championship’s leaders and Bridcutt’s former club - were interested in signing the 26-year-old permanently in the January transfer window.
Allardyce told the Newcastle Chronicle: “It’d be a better option for him and us if we could sell him, no doubt about that.
“Certainly his career needs to get back on track and realistically his career is not at Leeds and not here.
“If Brighton are interested in taking him back, where he had such a good career, then it would be better for us all if that was the case. The more finance I create, the more able and capable I am to recruit in January.”
Bridcutt, who spent four seasons with Brighton between 2010 and 2014, has played twice for Leeds and shone on his home debut against Hull City last weekend.
Evans battled throughout November to secure Bridcutt’s signature amid strong interest from Cardiff City and he insisted on Thursday that the player would be happy to stay to the end of the Championship term.
Evans said: “Media and agents get together and two-plus-two makes 107. That’s what happens these days. I’ve always said that we have a commitment on all sides for Liam to be extended.
“Should something permanent change that then we have to respect that. But I love the kid and it’s only the fact that Brighton are top of the league that would make him choose them. For every other statistic on the planet, he’d choose Leeds United.
“I’m still hoping that would be at the front of his mind. He’s certainly intimated to me that he wants to be around. I’ll listen to him and people here rather than listen to the television.”