The Four Players Leeds United Could Lose For Free This Summer

Leeds United have had a strong first season back in the Championship following last season’s relegation from the promised land that is the Premier League. 

Currently sat in second place, with a crunch match against leaders Leicester City coming up, promotion at the first time of asking is a genuine possibility. If that does happen, Daniel Farke may want to restructure his squad in the upcoming window. As with any club in the summer, a major part of that is deciding which players are given contract extensions.

As it stands, Leeds have four players currently out of contract in June of this year, according to Transfermarkt.

Here is that list…

Jamie Shackleton

Right-back Shackleton is a Leeds academy graduate, making his professional debut off the bench in a 4-1 victory against Derby County in summer 2018. Since then, he has gone on to make 92 appearances for his boyhood club. Last season, he spent the season out on loan at Millwall in the second tier, making 36 appearances.

This season, the 24-year-old has struggled for game time, only playing in nine league matches. He has primarily been utilised as a full back, after his shift in roles from his original midfield position. Currently valued at £1.3m, Leeds could be losing out on pure profit if the youngster’s contract was to expire in the summer with no extension.

Liam Cooper

By this summer, veteran defender Cooper will have been at Elland Road for a decade after joining from Chesterfield Town. A Hull City academy graduate, the left-footed defender has played over 350 professional matches as well as earning 17 international caps for Scotland.

This season, the 32-year-old has appeared in 14 league matches, his lowest in the Championship since the 2016/17 season. The Scotsman has also grabbed one goal this season, however, with his playtime fading, Farke will need to make a big decision at the end of this season on the future of their club captain. If no contract extension comes, Cooper would still be a strong pickup for any side in the division for free, especially with a transfer value still as high as seven figures. 

Sam Byram

A player who has played more minutes this term than the previous two on this list, full-back Byram has featured 25 times in the league this season after joining from Norwich City in the summer. This is his second stint at Elland Road as the defender was an academy graduate of The Peacocks before moving to London to join West Ham United in January 2016. His three-year stint there, which included a loan to Nottingham Forest, ended when the 30-year-old joined the Canaries.

Having played over 200 senior games since his debut for Leeds in 2012, the defender has extensive experience in the Championship and above. Farke’s men have had squad depth issues in the full-back areas this season, so therefore Byram’s consistent availability has been one of his biggest strengths. However, with the club aiming for a return to the top flight, and the financial benefits that come with that, the club may wish to invest in further squad depth elsewhere, although time will tell whether they see the former West Ham man as a part of their future.

Stuart Dallas

With it potentially being Dallas’ last season at the club, he would miss out on hitting the same double-digit milestone as Cooper having joined in 2015, only nine years ago, from Brentford. The Bees were the first club he joined in England after arriving from Northern Ireland. Going on to make over 250 appearances during his stint at Elland Road, the Northern Ireland international became a mainstay in the squad that achieved promotion back to the Premier League.

However, in a game against Manchester City in April 2022, Dallas suffered a major injury, a femoral fracture. Since that game, he has not appeared in any game for his club, still suffering from that same injury. With very few updates being given on the former Brentford man’s situation, it would seem unlikely that the club would wish to extend the contract of a 32-year-old who has missed almost two full seasons.

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