Leeds United have agreed a deal to sign Norwegian defender Leo Hjelde after his spell at Ross County last season (Nettavisen).

The 17-year-old joined Ross County on a loan deal in January and then-manager John Hughes labeled him ‘the next Virgil Van Dijk.’ While comparisons to the £75 million defender were lofty, Hughes backing the centre-back for the English Premier League was not farfetched, with Leeds United retaining an interest since 2020.

Rangers v Ross County - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Leo Hjelde is set for a big move. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Marcelo Bielsa’s side tried to sign Hjelde before his move to the Highland Scottish Premiership club but it proved unsuccessful. Leeds United are believed to have now agreed a deal to sign Hjelde. Personal terms were already sorted. The transfer will be pending a medical.

Hjelde will initially link up with the U23s team at Elland Road. Former Ross County vice-captain Callum Morris told NTOF of Hjelde in May: “He’s got a lot of attributes that you can’t really coach. He’s so composed. All the stuff he has got in his locker that I would say are uncoachable are going to take him right to the top, I think.”

 

The former County defender was a potential transfer target for the Highland side this summer, if Hughes stayed on as manager. But parent club Celtic and Leeds United now ‘agree on a price’ for Hjelde while Malky Mackay has replaced Hughes in Dingwall.

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