Leon Bailey Bayer LeverkusenMatthias Hangst/Bongarts/Getty Images

Bailey: I'll make Man Utd and Arsenal wait until I'm ready

Bayer Leverkusen striker Leon Bailey has indicated that he is prepared to make his long list of suitors wait, as he is not willing to depart before he has developed sufficiently.

The 20-year-old attacker moved from Genk to Leverkusen for €13.5 million in January 2017 and is under contract with the Bundesliga outfit until 2022. 

His outstanding form this season has seen him net nine times in 20 outings and attract attention from some of Europe’s biggest clubs, with Milan, Manchester United and Arsenal among the teams leading the chase to sign him. 

Article continues below

And while he does want to reach the highest level eventually, he is in no rush to leave his current home.

“Leverkusen is perfect for me,” he told Bild. “I want to develop and then I can take the next step.

“When I move to a big club, the people there will want to know me. I want to make a name for myself at the highest level.”

Leverkusen are a club with a reputation of falling at the final hurdle, thereby depriving themselves of success. Over the years, they have earned the moniker ‘Neverkusen’ due to their inability to lift silverware. 

Bailey, though, is determined to put this title to bed, having helped the side into fourth in the Bundesliga but more notably into the semi-finals of the DFB Pokal.

“If we go to the cup final, we’ll win it, I promise,” he said. “That would be the end of Neverkusen.”

Leverkusen have won the cup only once before, in 1992-93, while their only other major title is the UEFA Cup of 1987-88.