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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 July, 2003, 14:52 GMT 15:52 UK
Viduka plots Leeds exit
By Phil McNulty
Chief football writer

Mark Viduka's agent has confirmed the Australian striker wants to leave Leeds United.

BBC Sport revealed that Viduka was pondering his Elland Road future after he was hauled off at half-time in the 4-2 friendly defeat at Burnley on Sunday.

And his agent Andrea D'Amico said: "I'm trying to find an option which is good for both the club and player.

"There is still a lot of work to do before we can close a deal but I'm always working hard and talking to people.

"I hope we can announce something soon. Mark is a top player and it's important that he's playing at a top club next season."

D'Amico later confirmed to BBC Radio Five Live that he has made contact with clubs in Europe and in England, including Chelsea, but no firm offers for Viduka have been made.

Leeds chairman Professor John McKenzie insists he wants to keep Viduka, but the Aussie appears to be on the way out.

McKenzie said: "We've not had a formal request for a transfer from Mark. As I've said all along I am committed to keeping Mark at the football club.

"He's on a long contract and I am expecting him to turn up the heat on our opponents just as he did last season."

Leeds manager Peter Reid said: "I have had a talk with Mark Viduka about his career, but nothing official has come out of these talks."

Reid was believed to be furious about Leeds' performance in the Turf Moor defeat.

Do it my way or otherwise see you later
Leeds manager Peter Reid

Viduka was also taken off to avoid being sent off when he lost his cool in a pre-season friendly at York.

Afterwards Reid read the riot act and only Alan Smith was spared the manager's criticism.

Reid said: "There's a lot of work to do and the players have to ask themselves a lot of questions.

"Do they want to play for Leeds United? Well, do it my way or otherwise see you later."

Viduka has been linked with Roma, Barcelona and Lyon.

Reid has made it clear he does not want to keep unhappy players, but the loss of Viduka would be a savage blow.

If Viduka does quit Leeds, he will join Rio Ferdinand, Robbie Keane, Lee Bowyer, Robbie Fowler, Jonathan Woodgate and Harry Kewell on the list of departures.

Leeds also agreed a fee of 3.25m with Aston Villa for goalkeeper Paul Robinson, but the player rejected the move.

Mark Viduka's agent Andrea D'Amico
"I hope we can announce something soon"


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