Leeds Fear Losing Prolific Striker in January Transfer Window
By Adrian Back | January 8, 2013 3:08 AM EST
Leeds United assistant Mick Jones is concerned that the club could lose star striker Lucaino Becchio during the current transfer window after a superb start to the season.
The Argentine has scored 19 goals in his 29 league appearances this season and has helped Leeds, currently in eighth, keep pace with the top six as Neil Warnock attempts to secure a finish in the playoff places.
Becchio's superb form has certainly alerted numerous clubs and Jones is worried that there will be competition for his signature both domestically and from abroad.
"My biggest fear is that there could be pressure on us from other clubs for him," Jones told BBC Radio Leeds. "Look at his form at the moment and he's bound to be hot property. I'd be worried if certain clubs came in for him both here and abroad.
"We're working hard to keep him and Sam Byram beyond the end of their current contracts. I don't think Sam will go because he's in the right place to develop as a player but there might be some pressure to sell him."
Becchio arrived at the club with little fanfare in 2008 after moving from Spanish second division club Merida. He impressed then manager Gary McAllister and was awarded an initial three-year contract which instantly saw him become a crowd favourite at Elland Road.
He scored 15 league goals in his first season and has now racked up 76 goals in 188 league games. However, he has just 18 months remaining on a contract which was extended in December 2010.
While Leeds will be desperate to keep the in-form striker, they will also hope to stave away interest in 19-year-old full-back Byram who has become a regular in the first team under Warncok this season.
The defender signed a three-year deal last summer but the BBC believes that there is interest from a trio of Premier League clubs in Fulham, Norwich and Liverpool.
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