Garry Monk today batted off fresh speculation about Charlie Taylor and insisted Leeds United would not change their stance on keeping the left-back until the end of the season.
Monk said United’s plans for Taylor were “exactly the same” as they were in the summer when the club rejected a transfer request from the defender and vowed to retain him until his contract ran out in June of next year.
West Bromwich Albion, who have been monitoring Taylor for many months, are being linked with a £4million January bid for him and Premier League champions Leicester City were reported to have sent scouts to watch the 23-year-old during United’s League Cup win over Norwich City yesterday, a match in which Taylor wasn’t used.
Monk, however, was quick to dismiss the suggestion that Taylor might be sold in January, describing him as “key to our success going forward.”
Despite the academy product’s transfer request, Monk is relying on Taylor at left-back and the defender has been one of only three ever-present players in United’s 14 Championship games so far.
Monk said: “We had this in the summer. I think our stance is exactly the same as what it was in the summer.
“The club made a very clear statement in terms of what we agreed with Charlie staying here and we stick to that, we trust that.
“Charlie’s performances I don’t think have been affected. He’s a very important player for us and he’ll be key to our success going forward. Our stance is exactly the same – he’s a Leeds United player, we’re looking forward to working with him and he’s one, like a number of others, who’s the future of this club.”
Taylor is approaching the end of the three-year deal he signed in 2014, a contract handed to him by current Leeds owner Massimo Cellino.
Cellino’s relationship with him has broken down, however, following unsuccessful talks to extend his deal between the Italian and Taylor’s agent, Colin Pomford.
Cellino and Pomford previously fell out after failed negotiations with Sam Byram – another client of Pomford’s – ended with Leeds’ former right-back moving to West Ham United for £3.7m last January, six months before the end of his deal.
Cellino, nonetheless, rejected Taylor’s transfer request in late July out of hand. Leeds said in a statement issued at the time that they had “every confidence that Charlie will continue to conduct himself properly and play his part this season.”
Asked if he anticipated Taylor staying at Elland Road until May, Monk said: “That’s exactly what we stated in the summer. I expected that not to change. It was clear for everyone to see.”