West Bromwich Albion are stepping up efforts to sign Kyle Bartley with the chances of a return to Leeds United fading.
The Baggies have a made a move for Bartley and want to talk Swansea City into a deal as quickly as possible, despite Swansea’s apparent reluctance to lose him.
Leeds made overtures to both Swansea and Bartley in the early stages of the transfer window but expected a decision on the 27-year-old to wait until City had resolved the future of fellow centre-backs Alfie Mawson and Federico Fernandez.
Mawson and Fernandez are expected to move on from the Liberty Stadium after Swansea’s demotion to the Championship.
Bartley, who has been with City since 2012, is understood to have made Swansea aware of his desire to take up a permanent switch to Elland Road but contact from Leeds dwindled last month and United have not be actively pushing for a deal since the appointment of new head coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Bartley was installed as a top target by Leeds prior to Bielsa’s arrival. He is well regarded at Elland Road after completing a highly impressive season-long loan with United during the 2016-17 campaign.
United’s defensive performance faltered dramatically in his absence last term and a central defender was high on the club’s list of priorities this summer but West Brom are attempting to force the issue with Swansea having planned a bid for Bartley in the aftermath of their relegation from the Premier League.