Previous Leeds United managerial target Nuno Espirito Santo has reportedly asked to terminate his contract at Saudi Arabian side Al-Ittihad.
That is according to journalist Rudy Galetti, who also revealed a number of unnamed clubs are ‘interested’ in appointing him, with Nuno keen to take the opportunity.
With three matches of the season remaining, Al-Ittihad currently sit top of the Saudi Pro League, three points clear of Cristiano Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr side.
Nuno is said to be happy to see the season out in the Middle East, but is keen to agree a departure by ‘mutual consent’ so he is free to speak to clubs during the summer.
Nuno keen to leave which could open door for Leeds switch
Nuno was among a host of managers Leeds were keen to appoint back in February as they searched frantically for Jesse Marsch’s replacement.
The Whites made attempts to bring in the likes of Arne Slot, Andoni Iraola, Carlos Corberan and even Mauricio Pochettino, but were left frustrated as they were unable to prise any of their main targets to Elland Road.
The former Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers boss was reportedly interviewed for the vacant position, but Leeds would’ve had to pay £5.3 million to release him from his contract at Al-Ittihad.
They may now, however, have the opportunity to appoint him without having to pay a release clause, according to journalist Galetti.
He said: “EXCL: Nuno Espirito Santo asked to terminate his contract with Al Itihad. Some clubs are interested to sign him and he wants to take this opportunity.
“His agent is working with the club to resolve the agreement by mutual consent after the end of the season.”
Leeds will almost certainly be back in the market for a new manager this summer, but whether they return for Nuno remains to be seen.
Victor Orta was leading the pursuit of a new manager in February but he has now left the club, and with a new sporting director expected to come in, new targets are likely.
That said, if Leeds are relegated, Nuno would be an excellent appointment to get them out of the Championship at the first attempt.
He did an incredible job in the second tier at Wolves and helped establish them as a Premier League mainstay, though whether he would be willing to do so is another question.