Italian website CalcioMercato report that Leeds United have opened talks to sign Roma star Nicolo Zaniolo but the type of loan deal the Whites have offered has been rejected by Roma – who want a loan deal with an obligation to buy.

Zaniolo, 23, has fallen out of favour at Roma after the two parties could not agree terms on a new deal. His current contract ends in the summer of 2024. Roma have therefore decided to sell him now, in order to get in a decent fee.

The Italy star has been linked with a number of Premier League clubs this month. Bournemouth had a fee agreed, tabling a bid believed to be £31million. A recent report from Media Foot say Lyon, West Ham and Newcastle want him.

Now, Leeds have come to the table. CM say that Leeds – who allowed Llorente to go to Roma on a loan-to-buy deal with the option of a £20m purchase – wanted Zaniolo on loan. An obligation, if he reached a certain number of games.

However, Roma have remained stubborn. They are only willing to sell Zaniolo right now, or a loan with an outright obligation – in order to guarantee a cash fee. Whether the talks are ongoing remains to be seen, but it seems unlikely.

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Leeds open Zaniolo talks but Whites loan offer rejected by Roma

What is in the water at Elland Road? The club have brought in Max Wober, Georginio Rutter and Weston McKennie. If all add-ons and permanent fees are paid for the trio, it could see Leeds shell out a whopping total of about £85million.

But clearly, Leeds are not done. There are doubts regarding the future of Jack Harrison, who has been in excellent form this month. His goal against Accrington Stanley was a real stunner. But his future is in doubt, his deal ending in 2024.

It is hard to see why Leeds would move for Zaniolo unless Harrison goes. But of course, if the ex-Manchester City star does depart, then a move for Zaniolo becomes much more foreseeable at Elland Road. An intriguing day ahead.

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