Leeds United: Byram contract talks back on

Sam Byram
Sam Byram
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Leeds United and Sam Byram are back in talks about an extension to his contract amid further indications that the winger wants to stay at Elland Road this season.

United have instigated fresh discussions with Byram’s agent in the past fortnight and the 21-year-old is understood to have told the club that he is not looking to move on before the end of this transfer window. Byram’s long-term future is up in the air with his existing contract due to expire next summer and no agreement in place over a new deal.

United previously opened negotiations with him before Christmas but talks broke down rapidly after owner Massimo Cellino asked Byram to accept a lengthy extension to his deal on a reduced weekly wage, in keeping with the contract signed by midfielder Luke Murphy last month.

Cellino has been working to cut the wage bill at Elland Road since buying a majority stake in Leeds in April 2014.

The latest discussions between the parties are yet to break the impasse but Byram appears increasingly determined to see out his existing contract despite interest from elsewhere.

Newcastle United are one of the teams monitoring Byram and the Tyneside club sent assistant manager Ian Cathro and head scout Graham Carr to Elland Road to watch his performance in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Burnley.

Newcastle are considering adding a right-back to their squad before the transfer deadline but they are also ready to use their remaining transfer budget to lure striker Charlie Austin to St James’ Park from Queens Park Rangers. Everton and Aston Villa have also followed Byram’s situation this summer, though Leeds have not received an offer for the talented 21-year-old.

Byram is more than two years into the three-deal deal he signed in 2013, a reward for his dramatic breakthrough from United’s academy in 2012.

He is the leading appearance-maker in the current squad at Leeds and passed the 100 mark away at Derby County last season.

Speaking last month, head coach Uwe Rosler, who is using Byram as a right winger this season, said: “He’s under contract, he has a manager who really believes in him and he has a chairman (Cellino) who really believes in him. He’s found his home.

“We’re not looking to sell him. We’re looking to build a future around our young players and he’s a big important part of my way of playing and of the idea of this club going forward.”