MOT View: Leeds must take chance to sign Serie A int’l with more passes than Kalvin Phillips
Leeds United have been linked with a whole host of players this summer, but few reports have been as positive as the one connecting them to Roma midfielder Amadou Diawara.
According to a piece from Italian daily Il Messaggero over the weekend, the Whites have not only been offered the chance to sign him, but his representatives are due to fly to England this week to try and get deal off the ground.
And the stats would seemingly suggest that the Guinea international could be a decent asset for Marcelo Bielsa’s men.
This is a player who averaged a higher pass completion rate than Kalvin Phillips last season, as well as a higher total action success rate, more dribbles, and a very similar number of interceptions, as per Wyscout.
And he is consistently solid.
The midfielder hasn’t let his pass completion rate drop beneath 90% in his last eight games.
Against Torino on the final day of the Serie A season, for example, he managed a success rate of 97%, with some really nice, visionary long balls thrown in there for good measure.
We all know how much Bielsa loves a midfielder in the mould of Phillips, somebody who can distribute with range and confidence, and it would appear that Diawara can do exactly that.
His long pass completion rate against Torino was 100%.
And an assist that he produced for Guinea in last summer’s African Cup of Nations really illustrates his class.
Firstly, notice how Diawara drops in between the lines to pick up the ball.
Occupying that pocket of space makes him incredibly difficult to track, and gives him an automatic advantage over his opponents.
The Roma man just waits long enough for his marker to get close before firing a wonderful ball over the top of the backline.
As you can see, his striker is already shaped to make the run, but nobody else has spotted it.
The vision it takes to see it is one thing, but the talent to execute it is another entirely.
Of course, the ball is perfect, and you can see by the gap between the forward and the final defender alone just how far ahead of the game Diawara’s pass was.
The lad clearly has talent, and if the price is right and the deal can be struck, he could be a great option as cover for Phillips.
In other Leeds United news, this Sky pundit has been raving about a “dynamic” Leeds-linked forward.