A Blunder? – Why Leicester City Should Not Sell Demarai Gray This Summer
Demarai Gray’s future at Leicester City has been a subject of serious transfer speculations since the end of last season. The 21-year old has grown frustrated at the lack of playing time at the King Power Stadium over the course of the past year and as a result, he has been linked with an egress from the club. There has been strong interest in the player, with several Premier League clubs monitoring his situation.
Bournemouth have gone a step further and have already made a £20million offer for Gray which got rejected by the Foxes, according to reports from Sky Sports. That surely is a lot of money for a youngster who isn’t a regular in the team, but Leicester were right in rejecting the offer and should continue doing so, if more bids are received.
Gray has been regarded as one of most exciting young prospects in the country and rightly so. The 21-year old burst onto the scenes at Birmingham City in 2013 and has gone on to improve ever since. He had an excellent 2014/15 season for the Blues and started off the subsequent season in an impressive manner as well, before Leicester signed him in January 2016. The England youth international made 14 appearances after his arrival, registering 2 assists.
Last season, Gray took the field on 41 occasions for the Foxes in all competitions, only 9 of which were Premier League starts. He managed to net on two occasions and bagged 5 assists. The numbers may not have been brilliant as such, but it was the impact that he made as soon as he came on the pitch that was pleasing to see.
Pacey and full of tricks, Gray’s presence on the pitch enlivens the game more often than not. He has that knack of producing a moment of magic every now and then, that can fill a fan with awe. His brilliant strike against Manchester United in a 4-1 loss highlighted his top notch technical abilities as well. Yes, there is a seeming lack of consistency to his game, but given his age and the ‘on and off’ game time that he gets, it is bound to happen. However, his talent and amazing levels of potential are undoubted.
That is exactly why Leicester should keep hold of him. The club are all set to lose out on one of their most prized assets in Riyad Mahrez, who has made it clear that he has no interest in staying at the club. With a move to AS Roma moving closer by the day for the Algerian, it is important that they don’t lose Gray as well, who has the ability to be the natural replacement for the exit-bound Mahrez.
The club are rebuilding the squad having brought in some very impressive names in the shape of Harry Maguire, Vicente Iborra and Kelechi Iheanacho. But, with Mahrez likely to leave, the departure is bound to leave a gaping hole in their attack. However, in Gray they have a player who can fill in the vacant shoes left behind by the Algerian, if given a regular run in the starting line-up. Leicester should do everything to keep him at the club.