Leeds United owner Massimo Cellino is consigned to defender Sam Byram leaving the club during the January transfer window but insists midfielder Lewis Cook will remain at Elland Road. Manager Steve Evans had admitted he was uncertain whether both players would remain at the club beyond the end of the month but the Italian owner has moved to clarify the future of the pair.
Byram is out of contract with The Whites at the end of the season and the January window represents the club's final chance to make a profit on a player who came though their academy. The Daily Telegraph understands that Premier League side West Ham United are favourites to sign the 22-year-old.
Cook, meanwhile, is being tracked by AFC Bournemouth, with The Daily Mail claiming Eddie Howe's side are preparing a £5m ($7m) bid to sign the 18-year-old. However, while Byram's departure is close to being sealed, England Under-19 international Cook is going nowhere, according to Cellino.
"We have clubs asking for him [Cook]," the 59-year-old told The Mirror. "But he is happy in Leeds and that's enough for us. We won't sell him! We just want to sell Byram because he wants to leave. It is better to lose him now. It is less painful for the club."
Evans is planning to make "two or three" more signings in addition to retaining Liam Bridcutt from Sunderland on loan until the end of the season. Norwich City and Northern Ireland international Kyle Lafferty is among the targets for the Leeds boss.
Frenzied speculation in the transfer window comes amid Leeds preparing for the FA Cup third round visit of Evans's former club Rotherham United. The game is bookended by Championship fixtures, with the club in action against Ipswich Town just three days after the cup tie and the manager has attacked the fixture congestion.
"I'm looking forward to it," said Evans, according to the Yorkshire Evening Post. "But I think it's a real shame for the FA Cup that whoever schedules the fixtures puts midweek fixtures on the back end of it and that's both in the Premier League and the Championship.
"Whoever decided fixtures for midweek was on a desert island on their own I think when they decided it – it devalues the FA Cup I heard the Sunderland head coach Sam Allardyce speak on the radio saying he was making significant changes for Saturday and that's a man that has got English football and the FA Cup right through his bones and he's having to do it to protect the league fixture. We are very similar."