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…
Paul Robinson has urged Leeds United to bring Lewis Cook back to the club this summer, with AFC Bournemouth’s place in the Premier League hanging by a thread.
Bournemouth sit 19th in the Premier League table ahead of the final six games of the season, one point adrift of safety.
If they go down, then Eddie Howe will be keen to reshape his squad, with Robinson urging Cook to re-join Leeds after leaving Elland Road in 2016/17.
Speaking to MOT Leeds News, Robinson said: “I think there will be some top sides that will be looking at him.
“Bournemouth have got themselves in a bit of a predicament. It would be a great signing for Leeds if they could pull something like that off.
“He’s been there four seasons since he left. He’s a good player, I like him, he’s the type of player who would fit into a Leeds side in the Premier League.
“He’s a hard worker, doesn’t score too many goals but puts a shift in and you know what you’re going to get from him.
“Whether it’s a nostalgic signing, whether it’s been touted because of that. He’s been at Leeds before, but he’s at the right age and of the right calibre.”
Should Leeds look to re-sign Cook this summer, with the Whites on the cusp of winning automatic promotion to the Premier League? The FLW team discuss…
It’d be a really good signing for Leeds, you can’t deny that. However, I question whether he’s a player Bournemouth will be willing to lose even if they drop into the Championship.
Howe would lose others: Wilson, King, potentially Ramsdale, but there’s going to be an eagerness to retain a few key players. I’d imagine Cook will be one of those.
He’s young, energetic, knows the Championship after 80 appearances at that level, plus Bournemouth will be carrying parachute payments, which will allow them to hold onto his service from a financial perspective.
All those mentioned traits (albeit his Premier League not Championship experience) mean he’d be great for Leeds under Bielsa, but, unfortunately, I just don’t see a deal materialising.
It would be a massive coup for Leeds to bring Cook back to Elland Road.
He is a player that I think Bielsa would like working with – he’s great on the ball, possesses real energy and flair and can play anywhere in central midfield.
It’s unlikely that Bournemouth will want to get rid if they go down this season, though, as Howe will be keen to keep hold of the majority of his group because there are some great professionals in there.
Cook is at a very good age, though, and he should be jumping at the chance of a potential return to Elland Road given how much better the club are both on and off the pitch compared to when he left
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I think this could work really well from a Leeds perspective, particularly if they can get a good deal following Bournemouth’s potential relegation.
Cook looks a really bright prospect and someone that could be an option in central midfield for the Whites for some time.
There’s no doubt that is an area that Leeds should look to strengthen ahead of a season in the Premier League.
This season has raised question marks over how reliable an option Adam Forshaw is and I’m not sure Jamie Shackleton is ready to feature regularly in the top flight just that.
The addition of Cook, who has 71 Premier League appearances under his belt already, would bolster Bielsa’s midfield and he’s certainly someone that is comfortable with the ball at his feet.
A return to Elland Road to feature for his boyhood club in the English top flight would surely be appealing to him, which should make a move possible.