Quique Gonzalez has left Osasuna in what is considered a controversial move, but in different circumstances he could have been at Leeds United.
Signing for Osasuna in the 2017 summer transfer window for €1.5m, the forward has joined their northern Spain rivals Deportivo La Coruna for €1.7m.
The controversy comes in because it’s been revealed Gonzalez had a clause allowing him to leave for such an amount.
Braulio Vazquez, Osauna’s sporting director, has been forced to explained himself. Quoted by Noticias de Navarra, Vazquez said: “I have come to explain the departure of Quique, his clause and that there are no different versions.
“A year ago, Quique was an absolute priority for the coach and the sports management, he was waiting for offers from the first division and I went to Valladolid to close his signing, I was talking with him and his parents to try to convince him. Wait for first division, we gave him contract conditions and he logically put others to us, including that in the contract there was a period of 15 days until July 20th in which he could leave for €1.7m. But we considered that he was a priority objective for us and that, in the worst case, we would have a little more money than what we had paid.
“He had an offer from Leeds United on the table and was waiting for Levante, whose technical secretary was the current sports director of Deportivo. Two days after being here a Levante player broke his cruciate and they called us to try to sign him and there was no possibility. I made a decision that I think was necessary at that time, although it is a pity that he is no longer with us.”
Gonzalez very much looks like a Victor Orta pick for Leeds United, but perhaps it’s not the worst outcome that the Championship club lost out. The 28 year old only scored four goals in 42 Segunda Division appearances last season, suggesting he’d struggled to step up from UD Almeria.