Leeds United 'identify' new Premier League full-back target as ex-Liverpool player and West Ham man linked

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Leeds United are said to have identified a new full-back target amid Luke Ayling's loan exit.

Leeds United are being linked with a West Ham United youngster as they look to add depth to their full-back positions. The Whites recently sent Djed Spence back to Tottenham Hotspur months before his loan deal was set to expire, while Luke Ayling has joined Middlesbrough on loan until the end of the season.

That leaves Leeds with only Sam Byram as an out-and-out right-back, while Archie Gray can also operate in that role, meanwhile Daniel Farke has Junior Firpo and Stuart Dallas on the left, both of which have had differing degrees of injury problems, while Byram can also play on that side.

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Speaking about that recently, Farke said: "Yes, a little bit, and this is one of the reasons we chose to bring Djed in. Sadly he was also a bit injured, so it is always tricky, especially in January. We are aware that Junior and Sam have both had records in terms of injuries, it’s also fair to say right now in January we head into a period which is a bit more relaxed, we just have one game per week. It will be more relaxed and we have Junior a few weeks back in training with a good first appearance on the pitch the other day against Birmingham.

"We hope he stays fit as he’s an outstanding player on this level. As you mentioned, we’ll watch carefully what happens over the next weeks. We more or less have four weeks to make a decision and if there is an emergency case or a really good solution in these positions, we will try to make it happen. This is our responsibility, to make sure we create the bet possible squad, but we won’t do anything stupid or out of panic, we will stay awake."

On the back of those comments, the Whites are now being linked with a move for West Ham defender Ben Johnson. The Athletic claim the Whites are interested in a loan move for the 23-year-old, who can operate in both full-back roles. Johnson has racked up more than 50 league appearances for the Hammers, but he has not featured regularly this season. Meanwhile, Nottingham Forest's Neco Williams - who started his career with Liverpool before moving to the City Ground - and Burnley's Connor Roberts are also being mentioned as possible options this month.

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