It would not be a surprise to see a mass exodus from Elland Road this summer should Leeds United suffer relegation back to the Championship.
The Yorkshire outfit sit 19th in the Premier League heading into the final-day clash with Tottenham Hotspur, where only a win combined with Everton and Leicester City dropping points will be enough to keep Leeds up.
A rebuild will be necessary in the second tier if Leeds are to mount a promotion challenge and that means getting rid of players that haven’t shown enough at Elland Road, as well as selling those that clearly don’t want to be at the club.
One man who arguably falls into both of those categories is Junior Firpo, as the former Barcelona man has struggled for consistent form throughout his two years at Leeds.
Should Leeds get rid of Firpo this summer?
The Dominican-born defender joined from the Nou Camp outfit in the summer of 2021, with Marcelo Bielsa looking to bolster a squad that had earned a top-half finish in their first season back in the top flight.
However, he would endure a difficult debut season at Elland Road, making 24 appearances in the top flight and averaging a shocking 6.49 rating from WhoScored for his performances.
Speaking in an interview with GiveMeSport last summer, the Mirror’s David Anderson lamented the 26-year-old’s performances in a Leeds shirt.
He said: “All he seems to do is get booked all the time. I think he’s up to 10 yellow cards or something. You don’t expect that from a player coming from Barcelona; you expect a bit of class, a bit of maturity, a bit of leadership, and he’s provided none of that, really.
“I think he’s been a big let-down. You’re looking around that changing room thinking, ‘Who’s going to step up and do it for us now?’ And you’d be looking at someone like him, but he’s just not. In fact, if anything, he’s been more of a liability for Leeds.”
That trend has sadly continued this season as he has mustered just 18 Premier League appearances with a woeful 6.42 average rating from WhoScored, with one red card and five yellows to his name, which suggests that his erratic defending has cost Leeds on a number of occasions.
Most recently, the £60k-per-week man gave away a penalty against Newcastle United for an inexplicable handball before receiving his marching orders late on, so surely Sam Allardyce won’t be trusting him to start again for this weekend’s crunch match against Spurs.
Unfortunately for Leeds, Firpo still has two years to run on his contract at Elland Road but was linked with a return to Real Betis in January, so there is certainly scope for him to leave in the summer, especially if Leeds follow up on their interest in free agent Ryan Manning.
Whatever happens this weekend, there will certainly be a number of Leeds fans who will be hoping that his nightmare against Newcastle was the last time Firpo will ever wear the shirt.