The same report, however, suggests that Reading are the front-runners to land the 21-year-old on loan for the upcoming campaign after the midfielder spent the second half of this past season with the Berkshire outfit.
Ejaria is believed to be available for loan once again this summer, and while Reading currently seems the youngster’s most likely destination, Leeds United are making an attempt to bring to Elland Road in a bid to add more depth to their midfield options.
The 21-year-old initially reunited the Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard at Rangers last summer before cutting his loan spell short towards the end of December to join Championship strugglers Reading in January. Ejaria made a total of 28 appearances for Rangers in all competitions and featured in the Gers Europa League campaign but he found it difficult to acclimatise to the conditions and chose to fly back across the border to further his development in the Championship. With Ejaria’s first team chances at Liverpool are as far out as 49/1, it is best suited for the midfielder to play in a Championship club to have a shot at improving his overall game. Punters might want to check out here before placing their bets on the youngster as betting this summer transfer window has become a tricky business with Premier League clubs spending way more than they used to. The player is 5/2 in the odds to become the next young talent with betting markets offering bonuses to have a punt on young players, this would be the right time to put your thinking hats on and place a bet on the midfielder.
The starlet’s performances at Reading, though, were a lot more impressive, with the 21-year-old playing a key role in the Royals bid for survival in the second tier. Ejaria made an instant impact at the Madejski Stadium and finished the campaign with 16 appearances, scoring once and creating a further couple of goals for his teammates in the process.
Held in high regard by the youth staff at Anfield, Ejaria has made a total of 8 appearances for Liverpool at the senior level since his breakthrough in the 2016-17 campaign, but he is apparently not in Jurgen Klopp’s plans for the upcoming season. Hence, a loan move elsewhere could allow him to further his development and work on the flaws in his game.
Essentially a central midfielder by trade, Ejaria has the versatility to switch between holding and box-to-box roles in the middle of the park. A technically-gifted midfielder blessed with an intricate first touch and wonderful dribbling skills, the 21-year-old combines his sharpness, agility and technical abilities on the ball with his impressive range of passing to dictate the tempo of the game in the midfield.
That, coupled with his aggressiveness,eye for key passes and remarkable speed of thought make him a more complete and forward-thinking midfielder capable of shouldering both attacking and defensive responsibilities. Ejaria doesn’t neglect his defensive duties either, and often wins back possession for his team with crucial tackles and interceptions.
To put things into perspective, Leeds United would bag a massive coup if they manage to beat off competition from Reading in the race to sign Ovie Ejaria on loan for the upcoming season. The 21-year-old proved last season that he is more than capable of making a big impression in the Championship and the Whites would certainly benefit from his presence.
Leeds are currently quite well-stocked in their options in the middle of the park, with the likes of Kalvin Phillips, Adam Forshaw and Mateusz all in the ranks at Elland Road. However, the Whites might find it difficult to hold on to the likes of Phillips and Forshaw, given that both the midfielders have attracted interest from other clubs.
Phillips has been courted heavily by newly-promoted outfit Aston Villa and a host of other Premier League clubs, while Forshaw has also emerged as a target for Fulham (h/t Daily Mail). However, even if the Whites manage to keep the duo at Elland Road, making a move for Ovie Ejaria would certainly make a lot of sense, given that they have already lost loanees Izzy Brown and Jack Harrison.
Ejaria won’t be a replacement for Harrison or Brown, but with Samu Saiz’s future at Elland Road still up in the air, the Yorkshire giants might as well look at younger and more exciting alternatives in the market. The 21-year-old certainly fits the bill in that regard and his presence would bring that X-factor, unpredictability and energy to Leeds’ options in the midfield, whilst also adding to squad depth and increasing competition for places.
Having fallen short in their pursuit of promotion last season, the West Yorkshire outfit will be expected to reignite their surge for a much-awaited return to the top-flight next term, and the acquisition of Ovie Ejaria could just set the tone for some marquee signings to arrive at the club over the next few weeks.