Rangers winger Ryan Kent profiled as Leeds United links resurface

The winger has been linked with a move to Elland Road.
Rangers winger Ryan Kent. (Getty)Rangers winger Ryan Kent. (Getty)
Rangers winger Ryan Kent. (Getty)

Leeds United have been long-time admirers of Rangers winger Ryan Kent.

Reports have once again linked the 23-year-old with a move to Elland Road with the Whites' having failed to land his signature last summer.

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United attempted to bring him to West Yorkshire on loan from then parent club Liverpool, before he turned his temporary stay into a permanent move north of the border with Steven Gerrard's men at Ibrox.

Here, we take a closer look at Kent's career to date and what he could bring to Leeds:

Age: 23

Nationality: England

Previous clubs: Coventry City (loan), Barnsley (loan), SC Freiburg (loan), Bristol City (loan), Rangers (loan), Rangers (£6.5m).

Position: Midfielder (winger)

What you need to know...

Ryan Kent is a winger who current plys his trade for Scottish Premiership outfit Rangers.

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The 23-year-old came through Liverpool's academy ranks, having joined the Anfield club aged 7.

Kent has spent time on loan with Coventry City, Barnsley, Freiburg and Bristol City during his career.

He was handed his first competitive start for Liverpool in January 2016, which came in the third round of the FA Cup in a 2-2 draw with Exeter City.

Kent was then named Tykes Young Player of the Year for the 2016-17 campaign as he impressed at Oakwell.

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In 2018 he moved to Ibrox under Reds legend Steven Gerrard, where he won the Premiership's Young Player of the Year award and was named in the PFA's team of the season during a strong season as he scored six goals and bagged four assists.

Kent was of serious interest to Marcelo Bielsa last summer but opted to make his switch to Rangers permanent for an initial fee of £6.5 million plus add ons.

He scored eight goals and bagged three assists in his second season in Glasgow across 33 appearances, and has began the current term with two goals in four league games.

The Rangers views

Ryan Kent is a perplexing player," Scottish football writer Joel Sked told the YEP.

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"There are times, certainly moments in every game, where he looks like he should be far too good for the Scottish Premiership and that he is on the verge of truly dominating the match.

"But since his move from Liverpool last summer after a successful loan spell he hasn't quite taken that next step where he becomes that dominant individual. It wouldn't be unfair to say he was one of the most disappointing players in the Scottish Premiership last season when you consider his price tag, his talent and his potential.

"He should be someone who is hitting 10 goals and 10 assists minimum in the league. He didn't provide one assist in the league last season.

"He plays in one of the two No.10 roles behind the main striker at Rangers and is a fantastic dribbler, although can be guilty of over doing it.

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"I think it said a lot on Sunday in the 0-0 draw with Livingston that it was him who tried to take the game by the scruff of the neck and unlock a resolute defence.

"He had a wonderful chance late on which he should have done better with. Again, it comes down to a player on the cusp of doing something really special but not quite following through.

"Decision making is a key area for improvement, when to slide a pass, when to cross and when to shoot. He can beat players for fun with pace, dribbling or skill, pick up good areas and has the ability to play those eye of the needle through passes.

"While there is certainly a strong argument to be made that a £3million profit would be a great return after 12 months, I reckon there will be a lot of Rangers fans reluctant to see him go.

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"Him and Borna Barisic - another reported Leeds United target - are building a fine relationship down the left, and if he does find that consistency in numbers then he will be worth more to Rangers, both financially down the line and in the short-term as they strive to stop Celtic winning 10 titles in a row."

Former Rangers and Leeds player Mark Hateley told the YEP last summer: “He was a bit of a game changer. A very exciting player to watch as a fan, very quick, very enthusiastic, full of tricks.

“He’s a wide player but we saw him in a freer role as well at Rangers [in his first season], a drifting role, picking up balls in dangerous areas."