Leeds have had some standout performers in their first season back in the Premier League with the likes of Raphinha, Phillips and Meslier all catching the eye and earning plaudits for their performances.
Having all but ensured their stay in the top flight for another term, the Whites are now looking to build on their solid season to reach the next level as a top club in the Premier League and ultimately become part of the European elite.
Ex-Leeds star Matteo has stressed the Yorkshire giants now need to broker fresh terms with their most valuable assets to avoid the risk of losing them at a crucial juncture when the club are progressing towards establishing themselves as top flight regulars.
“The next step [after having roped in quality players] is brokering the contracts to keep them”, Matteo wrote in his Yorkshire Evening Post column.
“That might be the hard bit, especially thinking about the season Kalvin Phillips, Raphinha and Illan Meslier have had.
“It might take the kind of contracts Leeds United haven’t paid, perhaps since Mark Viduka’s days, real high-end money to tie your best players down.
“Otherwise, you risk losing them and then you have to shell out millions more to replace them and rebuild, which is even more costly.”
Matteo explained that once finances start flowing again, top clubs are going to circle around Leeds’ best talents like vultures, so they need to tie them down for the long term with fresh deals and keep the team intact as they continue rebuilding the club.
“Once fans are back in and finances start flowing again, the vultures will be circling around players like Kalvin and Raphinha and offering stupid money.
“We know these players can do it at this level and we have to try and keep them together.
“We’ve got to tie them down.”
Leeds are preparing to offer striker Patrick Bamford a new deal while Phillips is also in the frame to be rewarded with a new contract at Elland Road.