Reds Linked With Leeds’ Hot Prospect
In recent days, Liverpool have been linked with a potential move for 17-year-old Leeds United midfielder Archie Gray.
After a phenomenal start to the 2023/24 season in the EFL Championship, the teenager has emerged as one of the hottest prospects in English football, reportedly valued at around £40million.
With Liverpool’s long-standing interest in Fluminense’s Andre Trindade set to end, the Reds could turn to the wonderkid as they look to further reinforce their midfield department.
Today we’re going to take a closer look at exactly who Archie Gray is and whether he would be a smart purchase for Jurgen Klopp’s side.
Who is Archie Gray?
Archie Gray is a 17-year-old centre midfielder, currently playing for Leeds United in the EFL Championship.
The teenager has been ever-present in Daniel Farke’s side this season, who are currently sitting in third place, eight points behind Leicester City and Ipswich Town in the automatic promotion slots.
In total, Gray has made 17 appearances for the Yorkshire outfit this season, 15 coming in the league and two in the Carabao Cup.
Born in March 2006, Gray’s performances this season have put him on the radar of a number of top English clubs, whilst also reportedly attracting interest from Germany.
Gray has mostly been deployed as a deeper option in Farke’s midfield, however has featured regularly at right-back over recent weeks.
The teenager’s contract is set to expire in June 2025, so in the summer Gray would only have one year left on his current deal.
This could put top sides like Liverpool in prime position to make a move for the youngster by potentially increasing pressure on Leeds United to avoid a free transfer departure.
Why would Liverpool want Archie Gray?
I suspect that one of the main reasons why Liverpool have targeted Archie Gray is due to his incredibly versatile style of play.
Two of the weakest areas of Liverpool’s squad at the moment is the defensive midfield position and the depth at both full-back areas.
Gray would provide worthy and exciting competition to both of these positions, whilst having the potential to become one of the most talented players in the country.
Obviously, the 17-year-old would have some strong competition as an inverted full-back with Trent Alexander-Arnold being one of the best in the world in this position.
With Alexander-Arnold also still being seen as one of the best young talents in the world, by the time Trent reaches 30, Gray would still be just 23-years-old.
There is definitely a progression pathway there for Gray, and there’s no better mentor than Jurgen Klopp and Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Gray’s defensive stats are notably impressive, completing 3.33 tackles and interceptions per 90 minutes.
Liverpool will be wary not to let any transfer business stunt the progression of their own teenage wonderkid, Stefan Bajcetic.
In fact, Gray and Bajcetic are fairly similar in their stature and style of play, and the aim of Liverpool could be to secure their next midfield partnership soon after establishing their current lineup.
In my opinion, I’m yet to be sold on the £40million price tag that has reportedly been slapped on Gray by Leeds United.
This move might require a bit of patience from the Reds, where this price tag could halve in the next 6 months or cost next to nothing in 12 months time.