Why Leeds United should retain Tyler Roberts amid interest
According to Derbyshire Live, Derby County have been credited with an interest in Leeds United attacker Tyler Roberts, whose future at Elland Road remains in doubt following the Whites’ promotion to the Premier League.
The report doesn’t mention whether Derby are keen to sign Roberts on loan or they are weighing up a permanent deal for the versatile youngster.
Born in Gloucester, Tyler Roberts rose through the youth ranks of West Brom before making his Premier League debut as a late substitute against Liverpool on the final day of the 2015-16 campaign.
That turned out to be his only senior appearance for the Baggies, with Roberts subsequently spending time on loan at Shrewsbury Town, Walsall, and Oxford United in League One before departing to join Leeds United in January 2018.
The 21-year-old has struggled to establish himself as a regular starter under Marcelo Bielsa due to stiff competition for places in the starting XI. Roberts has accumulated 7 goals and 6 assists in 51 Championship outings for the Whites over the past two seasons.
The Welsh international featured in eight of the club’s last nine games in the Championship following the restart as the West Yorkshire giants romped home to the league title in the second tier.
Why Leeds United shouldn’t offload him
Leeds United arguably played one of the most attractive brands of football in England’s second-tier en route to their triumphant campaign in the Championship last term.
However, the Whites need to reshuffle their squad as they compete in the Premier League for the first time since 2003-04. Bielsa’s brigade plundered 77 goals in the second division last season but the Whites need to look for some upgrades given the difference in quality between the Championship and the Premier League.
To that end, though, Leeds need more depth in their squad to cope with the challenge of playing in the top-flight. That is exactly where someone like Tyler Robert’s could come in so handy for Bielsa.
The 21-year-old is held in high regard as a quality young talent with loads of potential. He isn’t a finished article just yet but his promising displays so far suggest that the Welsh international could well be a surprise package for Leeds this season.
One of Roberts’ key strengths is his versatility to play in multiple positions across the forward line, something that makes him a valuable asset to Leeds’ squad. The youngster has thrived as a central attacking midfielder and as a centre-forward, while also proving his worth in a wide attacking role.
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Taking all the factors into consideration, Leeds loaning out Tyler Roberts could be feasible from a financial perspective, considering that he’s not a regular starter. However, keeping him at Elland Road and giving him a crack of the whip could enhance his development and help Bielsa maintain adequate depth in his ranks.
Having said that, the Whites would be better off blocking any approaches for their prized youngster this summer.