Leeds and Daniel James left in limbo by Swansea

Leeds and Daniel James left in limbo by Swansea

The transfer saga of this year's January deadline day came in the Championship with Swansea City and Leeds United falling out over a potential move for Daniel James.

The young Welshman was supposed to join the Championship leaders on a loan deal with an obligatory option to-buy for £10 million at the end of this season.

However, in the final hour, it all went wrong for Leeds United, leading to outrage and a war of words.

Why the deal collapsed

The deal was set to go ahead with Swansea city happy to sell their talented young midfielder for a fee believed to be around £10 million, after an initial loan spell until the end of the season.

However, at the eleventh hour, the Swans changed their mind. The Swans called off the transfer and James returned to the Liberty Stadium.

The reasons behind why the deal was called off differ depending on your source, but Swansea's statement reads: "James travelled to Elland Road today to discuss a loan move with a view to a permanent transfer on enhanced terms should the Championship leaders secure promotion to the Premier League.

"However, the clubs could not agree suitable terms and the 21-year-old will return to Swansea."

There are also suggestions that the Swans pulled out after failing to land Leicester City midfielder Andy King as a replacement.

It rounded off a chaotic transfer deadline which left Swans fans furious.

They were set to see Montero depart for a loan spell with West Brom, which he did, Wilfried Bony leave on loan to Al-Arabi, he did.

Fer was then supposed to join Aston Villa and James was supposed to join Leeds in another frustrating clear-out from the Swans.

However, the last two deals were called off extremely late i the day, leaving Leeds fans furious.

Swansea City

The reaction

It's been rather dramatic since Swansea City took the decision. Swansea City have issued a statement, Leeds United's chairman has done the same, and even Daniel James' agent has had his say.

Swansea say they are 'disappointed' by the comments made by James' agent which were: "Swansea made no attempt to keep the player and at the first sign of money they couldn’t show him the door quickly enough. It is very disappointing but the player is philosophical about it."

Leeds United chairman Andrea Radrizzani said on Twitter: "I am very disappointed like all of LUFC fans, we did all we could and accepted all requests.

"But you always need two parties to agree to make a deal and we always had one single target player, none else.

"We move on and keep fighting in our next 17 finals. #MOT Together."

The failed transfer has caused outrage, particularly with Leeds United and supporters of the Yorkshire club have expressed their fury across social media through last night and today.

Interestingly, the two clubs now have to play each other at Elland Road in just under two week's time and that should be a rather feisty clash in the circumstances. The big question going into that one, will be whether James will play against the club he so nearly joined.

Marcelo Bielsa Leeds

What happens now?

Leeds United are now stuck in terms of adding a midfielder. Daniel James was their main target and that was made clear by the £10 million fee they were willing to stump up for him.

Had Swansea called it off sooner, Leeds could have looked elsewhere, but because the plug was pulled in the final hour, Leeds are left with no midfield addition until the summer when the transfer window reopens.

The only way Leeds can add a player is to delve into the free agent market, but it can be difficult to find players, especially ones of James' talent, via that method.

As for James, who had travelled to Elland Road to complete the deal, he must return to Swansea and play out the rest of the season with his current club.

Expect there to be more interest in the summer, and perhaps not only from Leeds.


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