Why Leeds should make a January loan swoop for Reece Oxford
According to a report from the Star, Leeds United were interested in signing West Ham teenager Reece Oxford on loan in the summer.
Oxford, 19, spent last season in Germany with Borussia Monchengladbach, making just eight appearances. After the loan spell, Monchengladbach wanted to sign the 19-year-old on a permanent basis and had first outlined their intention to sign the teenager in December.
Manuel Pellegrini’s arrival saw new defensive recruits arrive in the form of Fabian Balbuena and Issa Diop, which pushed Oxford further down the pecking order. Despite falling way down the pecking order under Pellegrini, Oxford committed his future to West Ham in August.
And as first thought, Oxford has found opportunities under Pellegrini hard to come by this season as West Ham have made the worst start possible in the Premier League by losing all of their first four games.
Pellegrini has decent options in central defence in the form of Balbuena, Diop, Angelo Ogbonna and Declan Rice. Given Oxford’s lack of game time, Leeds should make a January swoop for the West Ham starlet.
Leeds have enjoyed an excellent start to the season under new manager Marcelo Bielsa. The West Yorkshire outfit sit on top of the EFL Championship table after seven games and are unbeaten in the division.
Bielsa has made Leeds play a distinctive style of high-pressing football and there is a lot of positivity surrounding Elland Road. With the start the Whites have enjoyed, they seem like strong contenders for promotion. However, there are still 39 games left to be played in the Championship and Leeds must sustain this form in order to achieve promotion back to the Premier League.
To maintain the intensity through the season, Leeds could do well with a couple of signings in the winter transfer window, considering how taxing the Championship campaign can be. Given the fact that the system of football is of the highest intensity under Bielsa, the rotation of players is necessary.
Since Leeds play in a system which is based on playing out from the back, West Ham’s Oxford could be a fantastic addition. The 19-year-old is a versatile young player who can play at centre-back or in central midfield, which means he can be a utility player for Bielsa’s Leeds.
At West Ham, Pellegrini has enough defenders at his disposal, so letting Oxford go to another club won’t be much of a problem. Under Bielsa, Oxford could develop his game and acquire more experience by playing regularly in the Championship. Hence, this move would work well for all parties involved.