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Home Football Liverpool to sign starlet compared to Mason Greenwood and Mohamed Salah

Liverpool to sign starlet compared to Mason Greenwood and Mohamed Salah

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Liverpool are confident of signing highly-rated Derby County teenager Kaide Gordon, 16, for a fee of an initial £1m, which could rise to around £3m, with the teenager drawing comparisons to Mohamed Salah and Mason Greenwood.

Gordon, an England U16s international, is one of the most highly-rated 16-year-olds in Europe, and was named Derby’s Academy Player of the Year last season.

Both Tottenham and Manchester United were also believed to be showing interest in him but the Reds are in pole position and believe that the clear path to first-team football will convince Gordon and his family that Anfield should be his destination.

The player, who is left-footed but plays most frequently off the right-hand side, cannot sign a professional contract with Liverpool until October when he turns 17.

Like Harvey Elliott, though, it can be assumed that the Reds would make that a formality once the time was right.

Elliott signed his first professional contract in July 2020, having turned 17 around three months previously.

Jack Hasler, who has covered Derby’s youth sides over the past few seasons, gave the ECHO the lowdown Gordon on a Blood Red podcast to be released on Tuesday morning.

“Largely, he plays off the right but I think he could play in any attacking position,” Hasler explained.

“He can play as a number 10 or off the left as well, but in terms of Liverpool, he would be great on either wing.

“He puts in crosses, he can shoot from range and he has a good pass on him as well.

“His [biggest strength] is his dribbling skills – he is a very agile player and he has a bit of pace about him as well.

“In terms of the skills he has now, and at the age of 16, he is a top-quality player. He has a good eye for goal and he creates goals for his teammates.

Listen to the latest Blood Red podcast by clicking HERE

“If he was to bulk up a bit, he could, in terms of a Liverpool player, be similar to Mohamed Salah in that he has that left foot that is really special.”

While there is a long way to go before he can be thinking about reaching Salah’s level, the examples are clear for how Gordon could reach the top.

Elliott is one, and Manchester United forward Mason Greenwood is another who is impressing at senior level not long after having been a stand-out at U18 level.

“When I first saw Gordon in the U18s, it was last season and he was making his debut against Newcastle,” Hasler added.

“He was the best player on the pitch and he was 15.

“His physical attributes are mainly what he needs to improve, but if he continues to improve at the rate he is right now, he is going to be a great player.

“He is always going to score and create, but if you look at someone like Greenwood, he is good with both feet now and that is something that Gordon would be looking to do.

“[Like Greenwood] he was put straight into the first team training from the U18s and [Derby first-team manager] Wayne Rooney said Gordon was on a par with the senior players, so the debut was fully deserved and he was really good.

“The fact Rooney rates him so highly says everything because when Rooney was a similar age, he was playing for Everton and doing really well.

“If he is the manager of Derby and is giving him a chance at first-team level, I’m sure even in the short time they have worked together, he will have given Gordon plenty of tips on how to deal with the hype around him now.”

“Kaide is a fantastic player and he has got a lot of potential,” Rooney said recently.

“He has come through the academy. He is 16, he has got a lot of development to do and he is definitely at the right place to do that.

“Of course, there will be interest in Kaide because he is a fantastic player, so we expect there to be interest in him.

“We can control what we are doing at this football club, but we can’t control if other teams make bids for our players.”

Derby, who are currently struggling financially, needed to cash in and Liverpool believe the player represents someone who can follow their recent model of picking up the best young starlets before they demand a higher fee.

They have, in recent years, signed the likes of Elliott and Sepp van den Berg at similar ages, while Gordon will follow in the footsteps of highly-rated Manchester City striker Liam Delap, who also left Derby for one of the top clubs in the Premier League at the age of 16.

Delap, who turns 18 in a fortnight or so, is a regular in Manchester City’s U23s where he has nine goals in nine Premier League 2 matches so far this season.

The fact Gordon is even more highly-rated as he leaves Derby shows just how big a prospect Liverpool might have on their hands.

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