Mateusz Klich has now given his thoughts on Luke Ayling’s impending exit from Leeds United, which is expected to happen within the next 24 hours.
With his contract expiring in the summer, Ayling has not played in the league for Leeds since the beginning of November. As a result, he is close to signing a one-year loan with Middlesbrough to finish the season on loan.
The transfer will conclude the 32-year-old’s illustrious seven and a half-year tenure at Elland Road. He is having a medical at Boro today.
Among the most recognizable players on the Leeds team that Marcelo Bielsa led to promotion to the Premier League in the 2019–20 campaign were Klich and Ayling.
Klich, who experienced an emotional departure from Leeds just over a year ago toward the end of a 2-2 draw with West Ham United, has shared his response on Twitter with an emoji that perfectly captures the feelings of the supporters. Ayling, another member of that promotion side, has also moved on.
Klich responds to Ayling’s departure from Leeds
Klich was replying to a tweet earlier today from LUFC Data, who gave an excellent rundown of Ayling’s tenure at the team when he arrived for £200,000 in 2016 from Bristol City.
Ayling made 268 appearances for Leeds in all, contributing 21 assists and 11 goals. 248 of those games were won from the outset by the team, with 81 coming in as captain.
Luke Ayling’s Leeds United career:
251 league appearances
134 games at Elland Road
121 games won
93 Premier League apps
83 clean sheets
81 games started as captain
45.1% win rate
9 different managers
4 Premier League goals… pic.twitter.com/cX01Vsad5q
— LUFCDATA (@LUFCDATA) January 10, 2024
Ayling’s amazing strike against Huddersfield Town, his post-match interview at Nottingham Forest, and so much more will live on in history.
But considering his lack of playing time this season and Leeds’ refusal to extend an offer to him, it is finally undeniable that now is the appropriate time to say farewell.
Leeds should now be able to focus on finding a successor, with Burnley’s Connor Roberts being the most frequently linked player.