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Leeds: Whites identify Cody Gakpo as Raphinha replacement

Leeds: Whites identify Cody Gakpo as Raphinha replacement -Leeds United News

Leeds United have identified PSV Eindhoven forward Cody Gakpo as a replacement should Raphinha leave this summer, according to French outlet Foot Mercato

The lowdown: Rising star

Having come through the ranks at PSV, Gakpo has enjoyed a sublime rise to stardom in Holland and is now a fully-fledged senior international.

The 23-year-old has directly contributed to 75 goals in 134 first-team outings in a young career that has already yielded one Eredivisie title and one Dutch Cup success.

As shown by stats-based analysis account CrabStats on Twitter, Gakpo is right up there amongst the likes of Ousmane Dembele, Kylian Mbappe and Luis Diaz for expected goals and assists for young players throughout Europe.

With speculation continuing to link Raphinha with a move away this summer, Director of Football Victor Orta and Jesse Marsch now appear to have identified Gakpo as a successor to the Brazilian…

The latest: On the radar

As per Foot Mercato, Leeds are believed to be ‘very attentive’ to the seven-cap Holland ace.

It’s claimed that an ‘internal source’ at Elland Road has informed the outlet that the club view Gakpo as the ‘future offensive star’ should Raphinha move on as expected.

The report also states that Leeds would have ‘no trouble’ in paying the €30million (£25million) asking price to sign the starlet hailed as an ‘outstanding player’ by journalist Michael Bell following a goalscoring 45-minute rescue act in a 3-3 draw against FC Twente recently.

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Elland Road Leeds United

Leeds fans, do you remember who scored your first goal of the 21/22 season?

The verdict: Intriguing…

Despite all the suggestions pointing toward Gakpo replacing Raphinha, positionally or stylistically the two aren’t a close match and as such this potential move makes for an interesting dynamic.

Predominantly operating as a right-footed left-winger, last season the Dutchman scored 21 times and provided 15 assists in a sensational campaign for PSV whilst earning a 7.51 Sofascore rating comprising of 2.9 successful dribbles, 5.5 duels won and 2.6 key passes on average per game – the kind of form in a highly regarded league that would make any elite club sit up and take notice.

By comparison, Leeds’ current 26-year-old wing maestro netted 11 times and registered three assists across all competitions as well successfully completing 1.8 dribbles, winning 5.2 duels and making 1.9 key passes on average per Premier League outing during the 2021/22 campaign.

Albeit unlikely Gakpo could fill the void left behind by Raphinha in a positional sense, the exciting attacker – who was previously linked to Liverpool and Arsenal – would certainly make for a superb addition to Marsch’s squad and could perhaps lead to a slight shift in the attacking system.

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Article title: Leeds: Whites identify Cody Gakpo as Raphinha replacement

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