Once Weston McKennie reportedly gave his OK to a move to Leeds United earlier in the week, that seemed like one major hurdle that had been cleared. The other one, of course, was seeing Leeds and Juventus actually agree to a transfer fee for the American midfielder.
As the work week approaches its final day, that transfer fee looks set to reached sooner rather than later.
According to Sky Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio on Thursday night, Leeds United upped its offer for McKennie after first offering €28 million the day before. Leeds’ offer is closer to the €35 million that Juventus want for McKennie, but is not totally there just yet, with Di Marzio saying the the second offer is €30 million with add-ons included. There hasn’t been any reporting on how much those bonuses might be worth, but it surely would add a couple of million euros more and get close to that €35 million threshold.
Fellow Italian transfer reporter Fabrizio Romano stated earlier in the day that talks between Juventus and Leeds had been “progressing well.” Romano has also reported over the last couple of days that McKennie and Leeds have already agreed to personal terms, with Italian journalist Nicolo Schira saying the 24-year-old has agreed to a contract through 20217 with an annual salary of €3.8 million.
@LUFC molto vicino a #McKennie della @juventusfc https://t.co/3yKmVW4AIS— Gianluca Di Marzio (@DiMarzio) January 26, 2023
Credit to Leeds on this one because McKennie is very much a player that they want to sign, and they appear to be playing this negotiation game quite well. Same goes for Juventus after turning down Leeds’ initial offer 24 hours earlier and having the Premier League side come back with an offer that is closer to the price that they have attached to McKennie.
Basically, this is how negotiations go, and with the end of the transfer window coming up in a matter of days there is certainly some motivation to get the deal done as soon as possible.
It has also been reported by Sky Italia over the last two days that Juventus will not seek a replacement for McKennie, instead hoping that the return of Paul Pogba — and the trickle down effect on the depth chart that comes with it — will provide enough cover for the second half of the season.