Leeds United chief executive Angus Kinnear believes the Whites have the advantage in the race for Ben White due to his experience at Elland Road.
Brighton centre-back White spent the season on loan under Marcelo Bielsa, helping Leeds win the Championship and earn promotion back to the Premier League.
White shone in Yorkshire with Chelsea and Liverpool also believed to be keen on the defender, though Brighton insist he’s not for sale.
Though Kinnear believes Leeds hold an advantage when it comes to a transfer battle following White’s experience this season.
Kinnear said: “Ben is going to be hugely sought-after. It’s one of the risks of doing the type of deal we did. I know supporters say ‘well, why isn’t there an option to buy him?’
Ben White impressed on loan at Leeds this season
“The reality was Brighton weren’t prepared to do that, so it was either take the player without an option or don’t take him at all.
“We clearly made the right decision. We now have some conversations to have with Brighton as to where they see his future.
“We know they rate him very highly. We know other clubs rate him very highly. We have an advantage in Ben loves the club.
“He’s loved playing for the club. He loves his team-mates. He knows he’s going to get game time under Marcelo.
Plenty of clubs are believed to be interested in Ben White
“We have a small competitive advantage there, but ultimately, we’re now going to be fighting some big names for his signature.”
Leeds are believed to have had two bids, with the second at £22m, rejected by Brighton for White.
“He’s our player, he’s got a long contract with us,” Seagulls boss Graham Potter said.
“I have known Ben for a while, I have been aware of him, wanted to try and sign him when we were at Swansea.
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