Daniel Farke has told Sunday’s post-match press conference that he was delighted with Archie Gray after Leeds United beat Millwall to win 3-0 – but is now going to increase the pressure on the teenager.
Gray, 17, started for the eighth time in our eighth game of the season at The Den despite the signings of Ilia Gruev and Glen Kamara. Two experienced, international players. But Gray was preferred on Sunday.
That relationship with Ethan Ampadu continues to catch the eye. Ampadu sitting in the holding midfield role, Gray given license to play as a box-to-box midfielder and get forward alongside the front four.
He was excellent again. Other players perhaps stood out more – Ampadu, Illan Meslier, Joe Rodon and the new attacking duo of Joel Piroe and Georgie Rutter. But Gray was superb and Farke commented.
“Big ask of him, but the way he handled it was superb. Tonight he can be proud of himself. From tomorrow I will hold the pressure high again,” Farke told his press conference – as per Leeds Live.
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Daniel Farke delighted with Archie Gray as Leeds beat Millwall
Gray’s breakthrough into the first team at 17 and his early-season form is down to the midfielder’s natural ability, the quality he possesses which looks like he has been playing for 10 years at this level.
But, Farke also deserves some credit for Gray’s form. The way he has handled Gray, the pressure he is putting on him – the way he has with young players. Stopping the midfielder from getting carried away.
Gray was always going to be a talent but whether Leeds could maximise his enormous potential, was always going to be down to the way he was managed. Farke looks like he is getting the best out of him.