‘Depressing’ - Leeds United chief takes aim at Sheffield United over Gus Hamer, Cameron Archer transfers

Blades beat Championship club to signings of Archer and Hamer over summer
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Leeds United chief executive Angus Kinnear has bizarrely taken aim at Sheffield United and their Premier League rivals Bournemouth after missing out on the signings of Gus Hamer and Cameron Archer to Bramall Lane, and selling two players to the Cherries. Leeds wanted both United stars after being relegated to the Championship at the end of last season.

Leeds, who also wanted Hamer’s former Coventry teammate Viktor Gyökeres, before he moved to Sporting Lisbon for £20m, sold Tyler Adams and Luis Sinisterra to Bournemouth - a situation Kinnear described as “depressing”, albeit with the caveat of “respect” to a Cherries side currently enjoying their sixth season at Premier League level in the last decade.

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Speaking to Leeds podcast The Square Ball, Kinnear - whose side eventually ended their striker search by signing Joel Piroe from Swansea City - said: “When you look at players who were on our target list and we would have liked to sign, like Gustavo Hamer or Gyokores at Coventry or Cameron Archer at Aston Villa, [who were] players who we thought would be on the cusp of joining a lower-level Premier League team or good Championship side.

“We were very confident, and I think we were proved right, in our ability to fight off Leicester and Southampton. I don’t think Leicester and Southampton have signed anybody ahead of us in terms of who we wanted. But where we have lost out is to Premier League sides. It’s depressing, with the greatest of respect to Bournemouth, it’s depressing to lose players to Bournemouth or to Sheffield United.

“If you take someone like Cameron Archer. He has had one Championship loan and doesn’t want to go again. He wants a permanent home. We offer him a permanent home but would prefer to be in the Premier League. You could make the case that I think Leeds United probably have more chance to be in the Premier League more regularly over the next five years than Sheffield United do.

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“But the fact we’re not there is a problem for those players. We were as aggressive as we could be. I think Gyokeres went for £20m, Archer went for £17m and Hamer went for £14m. Those are players who are simply not available to Championship clubs. We’ve been aggressive on loans and used the loan market well and in terms of what we’ve spent I think we’ve been about as aggressive as we can.”

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