Leeds United’s promising young left-back Leif Davis is being linked with a season-long loan with Portsmouth, as reported by the Mirror via the Stoke Sentinel.
The report suggests Stoke City are also interested in the 20-year-old, with the two clubs set to battle for his signature on a temporary basis. Leeds’ promotion to the Premier league makes his route to their first team harder, which means a chance to play senior football further down the divisions is likely to be attractive to both Leeds and Davis.
The Newcastle-born defender appeared for Wallsend Boys Club as a youth, before being snapped up by League Two side Morecambe. He hadn’t made a senior appearance for them when Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds came knocking in 2018 but was still rated highly enough to make a handful of appearances for the Whites.
Over two seasons he’s appeared seven times for them in the Championship, turning out ten times in total. There is hope he’ll develop into a player worthy of a first-team spot, but as he’s now turned 20 he does need senior football to kick on. Kenny Jackett is known to be looking to bolster his left-back options following the departure of Brandon Haunstrup, who completed a move to SPFL side Kilmarnock earlier in the summer.
Lee Brown is likely to start the season as first-choice left-back, but with Davis also able to play centrally, he may still be afforded a chance to shine on the south coast if Pompey can beat off the competition from Championship side Stoke.
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Davis is certainly an exciting prospect, but if he goes out on loan he must play games. Leeds won’t want to see him sat in the stands or on the bench when he could be doing that at Elland Road.
It seems odd the two clubs wanting to take him on loan will most likely do so to offer competition, not a first-team spot. Davis, and Leeds for that matter, would surely be better finding a club in the lower reaches of League One who would ensure he plays 35 games next season, helping to develop him further.