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Brenden Aaronson linked with Leeds; Salzburg reportedly rejects $20M bid

Tim Howard and Danny Higginbotham discuss what Everton's next steps must be after Rafael Benitez's disastrous brief tenure at Goodison Park.

Red Bull Salzburg has rejected a bid of almost $20 million from Premier League side Leeds United for United States men’s national team player Brenden Aaronson, according to The Athletic.

A closer look at the numbers shows exactly why Leeds sees the rambunctious, creative USMNT player would be a good fit for their rambunctious, creative attack.

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Salzburg has an absurd 14-point lead on the Austrian Bundesliga field and is a big, big reason why.

Aaronson -- and many of his Salzburg teammates -- have posted some of the best numbers in the Austrian Bundesliga this year.

According to Sofascore, the USMNT playmaker ranks:

  • fourth in successful dribbles (29)
  • tied for sixth in assists (4)
  • 12th in fouls drawn (31)
  • 10th in key passes (32)
  • 11th in accurate final third passes (176)

Throw-in the relentless pressing we’ve seen from Aaronson in a USMNT shirt, and you’ve got the makings of a Marcelo Bielsa ideal not unlike Jack Harrison.

Philadelphia Union will have Salzburg’s back

The reported fee for Salzburg’s purchase of Aaronson from Philadelphia was around $6 million with incentives that could rise to $9 million.

Transfermarkt lists a sell-on clause of 20 percent, too, so the Union could land a serious chunk of change from any Aaronson sale. This, of course, means Salzburg is going to want to get every penny it can for the 21-year-old.

One for the future

Leeds may not get the chance to bring Aaronson to England before the summer and the youngster may well want to stick around for the experience of a UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie with Bayern Munich.

And with eyes on the match as well as Aaronson and his teammates, Leeds will know that the 21-year-old’s value won’t take a hit but could balloon with a fine performance in the UCL.

That said, Salzburg has been ready to cash-in on players in January in the past, selling Erling Haaland, Takumi Minamino, and others.

Follow @NicholasMendola