Leeds centre-half Charlie Cresswell, whose father Richard made 141 appearances for the club during his own playing career, is set to meet officials at Elland Road to discuss his short-term future later this month after expressing a desire to play regular first team football.
Although United’s neighbours have no desire to sell the youngster, they could allow him to depart on loan in order to accelerate his development if Jesse Marsch is unable to provide any guarantees about his involvement at senior level.
Given the links between Cresswell’s family and Paul Heckingbottom’s employers, that has inevitably prompted speculation that the teenager could be offered to the 44-year-old before the start of the new Championship season.
After seeing both Filip Uremovic and Ben Davies depart following his side’s defeat in the play-off semi-finals, Heckingbottom views bolstering his back rearguard as a top priority during this summer’s transfer window. Jake Clarke-Salter, previously of Chelsea, had been viewed as a potential target before electing to join Queens Park Rangers following his departure from Stamford Bridge.
Cresswell, aged 19, is viewed as one of the most promising young players in the Premier League after making his debut under Marsch’s predecessor Marcelo Bielsa during an EFL Cup tie against Hull City 21 months ago.
He featured five times in the top-flight last term, starting Leeds’ meeting with West Ham in December before making substitute appearances against Leicester City, Crystal Palace, Chelsea and Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Heckingbottom is maintaining a watching brief of Davies’ situation at Liverpool, after being impressed by the former Preston North End defender’s performances during his loan spell at United.
Although Jurgen Klopp has told Davies he is surplus to requirements in the North-West, the fact he is contracted to the Champions League finalists until 2025 could prove an obstacle towards a permanent move.
Wolves’ Dion Sanderson is also known to boast admirers in South Yorkshire.
Uremovic joined United in March, after suspending his deal with Rubin Kazan. However the Croata international has since completed a switch to Hertha Berlin.