Leeds United could finally bring long-term transfer target Ryan Kent to Elland Road at the end of the current campaign.
That’s according to a report by Leeds Live, who claim that, having been heavily linked with a move for the Glasgow Rangers winger ever since the Whites’ return to the Premier League back in 2020, Victor Orta could finally land the 26-year-old next summer – when the attacker’s current contract at Ibrox is set to expire.
The report goes on to suggest that, while the Scottish Premiership side are likely to do all they can to tie the former England U20 international down to a new contract between now and the end of the season, a move to the top flight of English football on a free transfer could fit perfectly with the forward’s plans heading into his prime years.
Considering just how impressive Kent has been for Rangers in recent seasons, coupled with the fact that Leeds have been linked with a £20m move for the winger for the past two years, should Orta manage to seal the signing of the 26-year-old on a free next summer, it would undoubtedly represent an absolute steal for the Premier League side.
Indeed, the £15m-rated talent has been a continuous source of goals and creativity for Gers over the past four and a half years, hitting the back of the net on 31 separate occasions and providing his teammates with a further 53 assists over his 196 appearances for the club – averaging a direct goal involvement every 189 minutes of football played for the Light Blues.
The £52k-per-week winger particularly impressed over his 37 Premiership outings in Rangers’ title-winning campaign back in 2020/21, scoring ten goals, registering nine assists and creating nine big chances for his side, in addition to taking an average of 2.3 shots – 0.9 of which were on target – making 1.8 key passes and completing 1.9 dribbles per game.
These returns saw the player who Andrew Dickson dubbed “completely unplayable” and “on a different level altogether” average a simply sensational Sofascore match rating of 7.23, not only ranking him as Steven Gerrard’s fourth-best performer in the league but also as the seventh-best player in the top flight of Scottish football as a whole that season.
Furthermore, over the forward’s 1465 Champions League minutes in the current campaign, despite his side’s disastrous showing in football’s most prestigious club competition, FBref still rank Kent in the top 8% of attacking midfielders and wingers in Europe’s big five leagues for dribbles competed per 90 – highlighting just how effective the 26-year-old is with the ball at his feet.
As such, it is clear to see exactly why Kent has been a long-term target of Orta and Leeds, as the winger would undoubtedly make an exceptional addition to Jesse Marsch’s current wide attacking options at Elland Road – especially on a free transfer.