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6 Leeds players Premier League sides should sign after play-off loss


Just as the old proverb warned, Leeds have fallen apart. Again.

Daniel Farke’s side were more than good enough to earn promotion back to the Premier League this year, but their total of 90 points was somehow not enough to finish in the top two and they lost to Southampton in the play-off final.

There’s Premier League quality in abundance all over Leeds’ squad, and their fans should brace themselves for a summer of upheaval, especially if reports of significant transfer debt are to be believed.

Here are five players on the books at Elland Road that top-flight sides should look to sign.

Crysencio Summerville

Summerville enjoyed a fine season / Ed Sykes/GettyImages

The man with the coolest name in football should be on the radar of every club in need of a young and dynamic winger.

Crysencio Summerville showed glimpses of his talent in Leeds’ final season in the Premier League before fully flourishing in the Championship last year, recording 21 goals and 10 assists this term.

There had even been calls for Ronald Koeman to promote the 22-year-old into the Netherlands’ squad for Euro 2024. Alas, that did not happen. We are booing furiously in spirit.

Daniel Farke, Archie Gray

Gray is Leeds through and through / Stephen Pond/GettyImages

Archie Gray’s performance under the microscope and the Wembley arch on Sunday left a lot to be desired, but he’s still only 18. This is hardly the worst thing that will happen to him. And not in a threatening way.

Throughout the season, Gray showed his immense capabilities both as a box-to-box midfielder and as an auxillary right-back. He’s already been linked with some of Europe’s top clubs, let alone those in the upper reaches of the Premier League.

As a third-generation Leeds star, it would be incredibly hard for the club to see him go.

Ethan Ampadu

Ampadu captained Leeds for much of the season / James Gill – Danehouse/GettyImages

Ethan Ampadu’s senior career started at 15 and has taken him to Exeter City, Chelsea, RB Leipzig, Sheffield United, Venezia, Spezia and Leeds in the eight years since. That’s quite the experience.

Though he now looks settled at Leeds and has channeled his many years of adult football into invaluable leadership at Elland Road, there are plenty of good reasons why bigger and better clubs could and should come calling.

Daniel James

Yep, still knocking about / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/GettyImages

In another life, Dan James would have a long career as a wrestling jobber who gets flung about like a boomerang, such is his penchant for winning hard fouls.

Anyway, let’s focus on the football. Despite often appearing from the bench, James tallied a respectable 13 goals and seven assists on Leeds’ way to play-off heartbreak. With so much pace in abundance, you can’t say that he wouldn’t prove a valuable asset to a team in the Premier League.

Wilfried Gnonto

Gnonto could return to transfer gossip columns / Dan Istitene/GettyImages

When Leeds were relegated, it seemed for all the world that Wilfried Gnonto would not follow them to the Championship. He even sat out the first few weeks of the season to try and make that happen, too.

Farke eventually reintegrated and refocussed the Italy international back into the fold. Whether he can keep on to him again is another matter.

Georginio Rutter

Rutter found his feet this year / Ed Sykes/GettyImages

Should Leeds have spent a precious £35m on Georginio Rutter in January 2023 when they desperately needed a more proven forward? Definitely not, but at least he’s no longer completely useless.

In fact, his total of 15 assists in the Championship was only bettered by Ipswich Town’s Leif Davis. Leeds might not be able to get their money back on Rutter but they could still probably shift him for a half-decent fee if needs be.

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