Premier League quartet Burnley, Leeds United, Newcastle United and Wolverhampton Wanderers are set to battle it out for Huddersfield Town midfielder Lewis O’Brien this month, according to TEAMtalk.
The 23-year-old has been a key player for the Terriers for the last two-and-half years, impressing out on loan at Bradford City during the 2018/19 campaign before becoming one of the first names on the teamsheet at the John Smith’s Stadium.
Despite finishing 20th with the West Yorkshire outfit at the end of last term, the midfielder was one of Carlos Corberan’s side’s shining lights and attracted interest from top-flight duo Crystal Palace and Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds.
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The Eagles may have threatened to hijack a potential deal for the Colchester-born man, but it was the Whites that were reported to be most interested in his services, as they launched multiple bids in an attempt to lure him to Elland Road.
This major effort to bring him to the top tier failed though – and he signed fresh terms with the Championship side in September to extend his stay at his current side until 2025.
However, this extension hasn’t deterred Bielsa’s men and their league rivals, with a £10m release clause thought to have been inserted into his new deal at the John Smith’s Stadium, potentially providing him with an exit route.
He is currently enjoying life with the Terriers though, climbing into the top six after their victory against Nottingham Forest on Thursday evening and has appeared in all but two of their league games so far this season.
If the midfielder does have a £10m release clause in his contract, then it’s no real surprise to see teams monitoring him because that could end up being a bargain considering he still has a lot of room for improvement.
A move to Leeds did look likely considering he has spent the entirety of his footballing career in Yorkshire, going out to Bradford on loan and coming through Huddersfield’s youth system, so this seemed like the next natural step.
However, their potential pursuit of Reading’s John Swift may put their interest in him to an end for the time being, with the 26-year-old recording eight goals and nine assists in 21 second-tier appearances for the Royals this term.
He could be available on a free transfer at the end of the season, so it would make little sense to fork out an eight-figure fee for O’Brien when they can recruit Swift and then have the funds available to pursue other targets.
A move to Newcastle may be a possibility though with their new-found wealth, so a transfer cannot be ruled out in the winter. With the midfielder only signing a new contract back in September though, he is most likely to remain with his current side to see if they can remain in the promotion mix over the coming months.