Leeds United were dealt a blow this week as they are now set to lose one of their highly-rated academy prospects to a Premier League side.
15-year-old prodigy Finley Gorman is poised to join reigning champions Manchester City in a deal that is reported to be worth up to around £5m, if all add-ons and clauses are met.
However, Daniel Farke should not be overly concerned by this news as there are plenty of other young prospects currently excelling in the academy whom he could unearth over the months and years to come.
One talented prospect who has caught the eye with his performances for the U18s this season is 16-year-old centre-forward Lleyton Brown, who has outscored first-team star Georginio Rutter.
Lleyton Brown’s season in numbers
The talented gem, who turns 17 in January, has enjoyed a fantastic start to the 2023/24 campaign and may push for a call-up to the U21 squad if his current output in front of goal continues.
Brown has registered an excellent four goals in eight U18 Premier League appearances for the Whites, which means that he has averaged a goal every other game as it stands.
The young prospect, who is only one year younger than current first-team ace Archie Gray, has developed and improved his performances since the end of last term, in which he managed one goal in seven U18 outings.
Archie Gray (17) in 23/24 Championship (via Sofascore)
Leeds and Farke have an exciting prospect on their hands as the 16-year-old marksman has showcased his goalscoring potential so far this season, and his improvement on his output in the 2022/23 campaign shows that he is progressing as a player.
This indicates that Brown is on an upward trajectory and supporters may be hoping that he will be able to follow in Gray’s footsteps at some point.
Georgino Rutter’s season in numbers
The French centre-forward has been in phenomenal form for the Whites throughout the current season but scoring goals is an area for him to improve in.
Rutter has found the back of the net three times – compared to Brown’s four – in 15 Championship appearances for the club since their relegation from the Premier League.
This means that the 21-year-old ace has been outscored by the Thorp Arch academy prospect, albeit at U18 level. However, the ex-Hoffenheim’s real strength is in his creative prowess.
The Leeds star has created a staggering 15 ‘big chances’ for his teammates and registered five assists this term, which shows that he is able to consistently split open opposition defences in order to create chances for others to score.
It is not a major concern, given how often the talented maestro is setting up his fellow attackers, but finding the back of the net on a regular basis could be the next step in his development at Elland Road.
Hopefully, Rutter will be able to find his shooting boots and added a constant stream of goals to go alongside his invention in order to fire Leeds to promotion glory in 2024.