Leeds United are reportedly interested in young Manchester United midfielder James Garner.
According to reports in The Sun, Leeds United have been tracking Manchester United midfielder Garner since his loan move to Nottingham Forest in the summer of last year. They are expected to make a move for the 20-year-old upon his return to Old Trafford after the ongoing season.
A Manchester United academy product, Garner made his Manchester United senior debut in the 2018/19 season but played just one match. Since then, he has made seven appearances for the Red Devils’ senior squad but has not been able to nail down a spot in the first team. The defensive midfielder has since been sent out on multiple loans to continue his development.
He first joined Watford, who were relegated to the Championship for the 2020/21 season, and made 21 appearances for them. Nottingham Forest signed Garner on loan the following year, and he made another 20 Championship appearances for them, scoring four goals. With Manchester United reluctant to let the midfielder leave permanently, he was signed on another year-long loan by Nottingham Forest.
Garner has had his best season statistically, scoring and assisting thrice each in 29 league appearances this season. He has also made an impression with his solid displays in midfield, helping the Reds mount a challenge for a playoff finish. That has been enough for Leeds to track the youngster and plan on a possible summer approach.
The aforementioned report states that Manchester United would be willing to allow Garner to join a Premier League side on loan next season, which could come as a boost for Leeds United. The Whites have struggled in the absence of Kalvin Phillips this term and adding some depth in the middle of the park would benefit them.
However, Southampton are also said to be interested in the youngster. In addition to that, Forest, too, are willing to keep Garner for longer than just the remainder of this season. But they may need to take the step up to the Premier League to stand a chance, which is a possibility. At the same time, Leeds are inclined towards a permanent deal, which could become a roadblock.
The 20-year-old is contracted with Manchester United until 2024. But with the Red Devils eyeing a new defensive midfield signing in the summer and with a new manager also set to come in, Garner might find it tricky to break into the first team at Old Trafford and could seek an exit. Whether a move to Leeds materialises remains to be seen.