Leeds United

Leeds United

Championship

Sources: Leeds Utd delight with dazzling star to stay, as tempting Tottenham swap fails

Archie Gray

Archie Gray wants to stay at Leeds United

Leeds United have received a huge boost in their bid to keep onto prized asset Archie Gray this summer – despite a wealth of transfer interest in the teenager.

Gray caught the headlines when he was named on the bench against Arsenal at Elland Road in December 2021 under then-manager Marcelo Bielsa.

The 15-year-old, who had already played for Leeds‘ Under-23s, was still studying for his GCSEs and despite his young age, he felt he was ready to play for the first-team.

When asked if he was ready for the step up back then, he told The Athletic in May: “Oh yeah, definitely. From 14 or 15, I felt like I could start training and playing with the older ages, to get myself up towards the first team.

“From a young age, I felt good and I had trust in my ability. There wasn’t any trepidation (in stepping into the fold under Bielsa), no.”

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That confidence has been plain to see this season for Leeds, where Gray racked up 52 appearances in all competitions; bagging one goal and two assists to boot.

Such is the mark of the now 18-year-old, in the vast majority of those games he was utilised as a right-back, despite being a midfielder by trade.

As Daniel Farke’s men pushed for an immediate return to the Premier League, Gray grew in stature and importance – giving the Whites some much-needed solidity on the right side of their defence.

His form earned him the Championship Young Player of the Year award in his breakthrough season, with the teenager playing a huge part in their run to the play-off final at Wembley in May.

Playing for Leeds means ‘everything to me’

Before that agonising 1-0 loss to Southampton, Gray told Leeds’ website: “I’ve followed Leeds since I was born, pretty much and it obviously means everything to me. I’m walking out there as a fan and as a player as well so it will mean everything to me.” 

However, following Leeds’ unsuccessful attempt to get out of the Championship at the first time of asking, Gray has been linked with a big-money move elsewhere.

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Leeds are under pressure to balance the books and not fall afoul of profit and sustainability rules, meaning one of their most coveted stars may have to be sold this summer.

That means the likes of winger and Championship Player of the Year Crysencio Summerville, fellow wideman Wilfried Gnonto, and possibly more, may head to pastures new in the coming weeks and months.

Leeds receive Archie Gray transfer boost

Despite that, TEAMtalk sources understand that Archie Gray will not be pushing to leave Leeds this summer despite the club’s failure to win promotion.

Gray, who signed a new deal in January until 2028 and is coveted by a number of Premier League sides including Tottenham and overseas teams like Borussia Dortmund, is more than happy to remain at Elland Road for now.

His agent Hayden Evans, together with his father and former Leeds player Andy Gray, fear his rapid progress could be stunted by a move elsewhere and are thrilled with his current trajectory and development at Leeds.

Spurs have been linked with a cash-plus player offer for Gray – already rated in the £40m-£50m bracket – involving midfielder Oliver Skipp.

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And while Skipp, 23, could be of interest to Leeds if made available, the Whites also hope to retain Gray’s services.

They believe his value and importance to the club is only set to grow, so do not see his sale as the right move right now and could look to move on other in-demand assets instead; first to keep their homegrown star in situ and second to keep the financial wolves from Leeds’ door.

Of course, a mammoth proposal could change the Leeds and Gray stance – especially if a promise of first-team football came with it – but for now the immediate desire of the Gray family is for Archie to remain at the Championship outfit.