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Who is Archie Gray? Tottenham’s 18-year-old wonderkid | A tactical profile

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Archie Gray at Tottenham - the next big thing?

Who is Tottenham’s latest signing Archie Gray? More on the 18-year-old wonderkid

Tottenham Hotspur’s first signing of the 2024-25 season, is 18-year-old Archie Gray from Leeds United. Let’s deep dive into who the youngster is and what made Spurs pursue a move for the highly talented player.

The Lilywhites secured the signing of Archie Gray from Leeds United for a fee of £40m. The versatile youngster, who can play in central midfield and at right-back, has penned a six-year contract with the North London club.

Gray, who made his senior debut for Leeds last August, played a key role in the club’s push for promotion to the Premier League, making 52 appearances across various positions. His performances caught the eye of several top clubs, with Brentford initially agreeing a deal for the player before he opted to join Tottenham.

Tottenham will be hoping that Gray can follow in the footsteps of his family members and make a name for himself at the highest level. His father Andy, grandfather Frank, and great-uncle Eddie were all former Leeds United players, and his younger brother Harry is currently in the Leeds academy.  This family connection to the club, combined with the faith shown in him by former Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa, who allowed Gray to miss school to train with the first team, suggests that the young midfielder has the pedigree and potential to succeed at the top level.

Who is Tottenham's latest signing Archie Gray? More on the 18-year-old wonderkid.
Who is Tottenham’s latest signing Archie Gray? More on the 18-year-old wonderkid.

Young Blood.

Gray’s primary strength lies in his versatility. The 18-year-old has demonstrated his ability to excel in both central midfield and at right-back. This adaptability is reminiscent of Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, who has also thrived in a similar role, starting as a midfielder in his youth days before transitioning to a full-back position, and now, playing a hybrid role for his club.

Like the Scouser, Gray possesses excellent technical skills and vision for his age, allowing him to dictate play from deep positions. Of his 52 appearances last term, 30 were from right-back alone. His passing range and ability to switch the play make him a valuable asset in midfield, while his crossing ability and attacking instincts make him a threat going forward from the right-back position.

The youngster has shown a keen understanding of the game, making well-timed runs and effectively positioning himself to support the attack and defence. For someone who excels at multiple positions, game awareness and tactical awareness are of topmost importance, and Gray is showing good levels of understanding on both of those fronts.

Archie Gray will follow in the footsteps of this random Croat who also used to wear #14 for Tottenham.
Archie Gray will follow in the footsteps of this random Croat who also used to wear #14 for Tottenham.

Gray in Tottenham

However, as is the case with any youngster, in spite of his impressive performances, Gray is still a raw talent at 18 years old. He may lack the physical strength and experience to compete at the highest level immediately. Adapting to the demands of the Premier League and European football could surely be a challenge, and Tottenham will need to manage his development carefully.

Another potential weakness is his lack of consistency. As a young player, Gray may struggle to maintain his high level of performance over an extended period. Maintaining focus and avoiding complacency will be crucial for his continued growth and development.

As far as fitting in at Tottenham matters, his ability to play in central midfield and at right-back makes him an attractive option for Ange. In midfield, Gray will provide competition for places alongside the likes of James Maddison, Rodrigo Bentancur Pape Matar Sarr, and Oliver Skipp. His passing range and vision could complement the more defensive-minded players in the squad, allowing Tottenham to control possession and dictate the tempo of games.

Our new #14

At right-back, Gray’s attacking instincts and crossing ability could make him an ideal fit for Postecoglou’s system. With Emerson Royal’s future uncertain, Gray could provide a long-term solution in the position, offering a different dimension to the team’s plan while playing a strong second fiddle to Pedro Porro.

The move to North London represents an exciting opportunity for Gray to continue his development at a world-class club. To add to his good fortune, Big Ange has a reputation for nurturing young talent and implementing an attacking, possession-based style of play that could suit Gray’s strengths. With the potential departure of several midfielders from the Tottenham squad, Gray may find himself with a chance to make an immediate impact and establish himself as a regular in the team.

Overall, Gray’s signing is a coup for Tottenham, who have secured the services of one of the most promising young midfielders in English football. His technical ability, vision, and tenacity certainly make him an exciting prospect, and with the right guidance and development, he could become a crucial player for Spurs in the years to come.

More Tottenham Hotspur News:

In Gray and Lucas Bergvall, who had previously signed a deal to join Tottenham this summer, the Lilywhites have two young stars who could become the face of the club sooner rather than later—hoping for the best possible start to both their Spurs’ careers.

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