This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Leeds United are reportedly interested in a deal to sign Middlesbrough midfielder Marcus Tavernier according to TEAMtalk.
The Whites are clearly keen to strengthen their depth in the first-team squad in the January transfer window, and have seemingly set their sights on signing Tavernier before the end of the month.
The midfielder has made 25 appearances for Boro this term, and chipped in with three goals and three assists as they mount a surprise challenge for promotion into the Premier League.
Neil Warnock’s side are currently sat seventh in the second-tier standings, and will be hoping they can put together a positive run of results at the earliest of opportunities.
It is claimed by TEAMtalk that Middlesbrough have rejected enquiries for Tavernier’s services this month, with the likes of Everton, Leicester City and Wolves also keen on a deal for the winger.
Tavernier has been with Middlesbrough since 2013, and could be tempted by a move to Elland Road, with Leeds currently playing their football in the Premier League, after winning promotion from the Championship under the watchful eye of Marcelo Bielsa last season.
But would Tavernier be a good signing for Leeds in the January transfer window?
I like Tavernier.
He’s a player that has improved consistently at Middlesbrough and is proving why he’s so highly-rated under Neil Warnock at this moment in time.
Leeds’ interest isn’t a surprise given they have a wide scouting network, but a move won’t materialise this winter.
Marcelo Bielsa is happy with his first-team squad and, whilst Leeds might look short in areas, the Whites won’t be big movers this month.
Tavernier, for me, would be a decent addition at Elland Road. However, it’s just unlikely to happen.
If you pushed me, the interest from elsewhere might well materialise first.
There’s an awful lot to like about Tavernier and I’d be really interested to see him develop under Bielsa.
He’s not someone I can see making an impact for the Whites this term but he looks like a player with a bright future, so it could be a sound investment from Leeds’ perspective.
The 21-year-old is not someone that Boro will want to lose and a deal that includes a loan-back may work best for all involved because I’m not convinced he’s ready for the Premier League just yet.
Even so, this is surely a move that will appeal to the Leeds-born winger and you feel if the Yorkshire club take action it’ll be hard for the Teessiders to hold on.
I would’ve thought that Leeds would be focusing on other areas of the pitch than trying to secure another winger.
Admittedly Tavernier has played in an attacking midfield role as well for Boro this season, which is somewhere that Bielsa has experimented with summer signing Rodrigo, but if he’s wanted for that role then I think Leeds could do better.
Tavernier isn’t the finished article by a long shot but I don’t think he’s ready to be thrown into a Premier League team that are aiming for the top half just yet.
What Leeds need is a relatively experienced advanced midfielder with a goal threat – and unfortunately I don’t think Tavernier is at that level just yet.