Roma Close In on Signing Leeds United Defender

After landing Evan Ndicka, Roma could further reinforce their defensive department with Leeds United’s Rasmus Kristensen. Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio reports negotiations between the clubs have reached advanced stages after the player gave his go-ahead.

Roma courted Kristensen during his impressive career at Red Bull Salzburg. But the Austrians’ at-the-time €15 million asking price blew the Giallorossi out of the water. Leeds got a slight discount last summer and brought the 25-year-old to Elland Road to address their defensive woes.

Kristiansen’s arrival failed to produce the desired effect. Though the Denmark international showed promising signs during his maiden Premier League campaign, Leeds couldn’t keep hold of their top-flight status. In 26 league appearances, the right full-back tallied three goals and one assist, gaining plaudits for his contribution.

With Leeds shifting to the Championship, Kristiansen could leave Yorkshire after only one year. His skills remain in high demand, but it seems Roma will be his next destination. Jose Mourinho’s men have laid the groundwork for his signing, convincing the player’s camp that a move to the Stadio Olimpico would be in his best interest.

It’s now up to the clubs to find a formula for the deal. Roma would ideally take Kristensen on loan with an option to buy. Negotiations are moving in the right direction, as Leeds won’t oppose the Dane’s departure now that they brace themselves for another second-tier season. But his transfer to Rome is not a foregone conclusion yet.

After failing to acquire Kristensen’s signature last summer, Roma went for Zeki Celik. If the Turk’s first season in Italy was anything to go by, they didn’t make a mistake. And with Ndicka already committing himself to Mourinho’s cause, it’s somewhat unfathomable why the Giallorossi are insisting on the ex-Ajax man’s arrival. 

Maybe it’s because they’re ready to part company with Roger Ibanez. It’s not impossible to see Chris Smalling hit the road. But the former seems to be a more realistic candidate to make room for Kristensen. 

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