Why Riqui Puig would be a fantastic signing for Leeds United
According to 90min (h/t Leeds Live), Leeds United have been offered the chance to sign Riqui Puig on loan. The Barcelona starlet has fallen out of favour at the club despite enjoying a fantastic breakthrough season last time around.
He has been made known by Ronald Koeman that he does not feature in his plans for this current season. The report states that the player’s agent has been in touch with Leeds.
A product of Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy, he joined the academy in 2013. Over the next few seasons, he moved up various youth levels to finally get promoted to the Barcelona B side in 2018.
It was from there that Puig really took the reserves by storm with his performances. He made a total of 56 appearances across two seasons, scoring 2 goals and assisting 10. During that time, he was often called up to the senior team.
He was handed his first-team debut in December 2018 against Cultural Leonesa in a Copa del Rey game. The same season in April 2019, he was handed his La Liga debut against SD Huesca. It was only this season that he was officially promoted to the first-team. The playmaker is currently a part of the Spain U-21 side, with 3 appearances to date.
Leeds need a playmaker like Puig
While Leeds did enjoy a good start on their return to the Premier League, a couple of losses have somewhat brought them back to reality. It’s not that they have a bad squad but it’s just that they need better quality players to tackle the beast that the Premier League is.
Their squad looks adept in most departments but there seems to be some chinks when it comes to creative midfielders. Tyler Roberts and Pablo Hernandez are their only two players in that position, while Rodrigo Moreno has been shoehorned there this season.
Roberts is too young to be relied on. Hernandez is running on his last legs at 35 and Rodrigo is a makeshift attacking midfielder. It is clear that another playmaker is needed at Elland Road and Riqui Puig could be their man.
The nifty, fleetfooted diminutive midfielder, often likened to Andres Iniesta, drew rave reviews for his performances for Barcelona last season. He provided a breath of fresh air in a stagnating midfield with his passes, touches and final balls. Even if it is on a loan deal, Puig should be signed by Leeds.
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He is just 21 and is looking for first-team football, something Marcelo Bielsa can likely offer him at Elland Road. With Monaco and RB Leipzig also interested in him, Leeds should hurry to complete a deal in January itself.