Leeds United director of football Victor Orta is confident that Kalvin Phillips and Kemar Roofe will both sign new contracts at Elland Road this summer.
Orta was speaking to the media in Australia ahead of the Whites’ pre-season clash with Manchester United and admitted to Leeds Live that he is confident that both players will sign new deals.
Phillips was one of the standout players for Leeds last season, as the Whites just missed out on promotion from the Championship.
Meanwhile, Roofe was also a key player for Leeds last season and finished the campaign as the Whites’ top scorer with 15 goals, despite struggling with injury problems.
The 26-year-old has one year remaining on his current deal with Leeds and has been linked with a move to Rangers this summer.
However, Orta is confident that both players will commit their futures to the club by signing new contracts at Elland Road.
Here are three reasons why Orta’s update is superb news for Leeds…
They are both key players
It might seem like an obvious thing to say, but Phillips and Roofe were both extremely important players for Leeds in the Championship last season and both will be key to their chances of promotion this coming campaign.
Marcelo Bielsa was able to get the best out of both of them, with Phillips excelling in his new defensive midfield role and Roofe scoring the most goals in a season since he arrived at Elland Road from Oxford three years ago.
Leeds have already sold two key players so far in this transfer window with defender Pontus Jansson leaving to join Brentford and Jack Clarke moving to Spurs, even though that latter has returned to Elland Road on loan.
The Whites will be expected to challenge for automatic promotion next season and Bielsa cannot afford to lose any more of his top players, so getting these two tied down to new deals would be a huge boost.
They are both players for the future
There is no denying that Leeds will need to strengthen next summer if they win promotion to the Premier League this season, but Phillips and Roofe would probably be two of the first names on their teamsheet in the top flight.
Phillips especially is more than capable of making an impact in the Premier League and he is exactly the sort of player that Bielsa will be able to build his team around in the top flight, so getting him tied down to a new long-term contract is crucial.
Roofe is also a very talented player and will probably feel that he deserves the chance to play in the Premier League at some point in his career.
If Leeds do win promotion next season, then I’m sure these two will play an extremely important role in helping them get there, so getting them both to commit their futures to the club would be huge.
It is a statement of intent
Leeds finished third in the Championship table last season, their highest finish in the second tier since they were relegated from the Premier League in 2004.
I’m sure there will be plenty of people that will question whether they can do it again this season and what better way to show other clubs in the Championship that they mean business by getting two of their biggest stars to sign new contracts.
It would send a strong statement of intent to the rest of the division, especially after selling two key players in Clarke and Jansson.
Persuading Marcelo Bielsa to sign a new contract might just turn out to be the best piece of business Leeds conduct this summer, but if they can get Phillips and Roofe to sign new contracts, that would surly be a close second.