Leeds United have been a club renowned for its questionable transfer moves in recent years, with former Sporting Director Victor Orta having been at the heart of the bulk of them.
The Spaniard had a huge hand in decisions made regarding managerial switches and incoming players, which ultimately doomed them to the drop last year, and allowed the bulk of their squad to easily depart soon after
No less than 15 of their first-team stars have departed, with the likes of Brenden Aaronson, Rasmus Kristensen and Max Wober all jumping ship despite having signed within the last year.
To see such new faces rush to exit Elland Road only compounded Orta’s failures, who even saw his contract terminated in May in order to usher in the new era.
It took 16 years for them to return to the Premier League after their 2004 relegation, and the hope will be that Daniel Farke can ensure that their current stay in the second tier is not nearly as long.
Given the emphatic summer of spending the German enjoyed, as he sought to offset these exits, the club are certainly in a strong enough position to dream of an instant promotion this year.
In what was their first window in a while without the disgraced sporting director, it was largely a positive one as they fought to quell the tide of outgoings spurred on by various clauses that facilitated an easy exit.
Shrewd signings like Glen Kamara, Joe Rodon and Djed Spence brought top-flight experience to Elland Road, whilst the likes of Jaidon Anthony and Joel Piroe boast numerous years starring within the Championship between them.
However, when viewing both the pedigree they brought and their recent performances, Ethan Ampadu must stand out as their marquee addition.
How has Ampadu performed at Leeds?
Preying on Chelsea’s desperation to offload the bulk of a heavily bloated squad, the Wales international had got lost amongst the talent they boasted. At one point last season Graham Potter was forced to play two matches in training due to the sheer number of players they had at Cobham, so for the 23-year-old returning from a largely uneventful loan spell in Italy, he was unlikely to break through.
Dropping down a division offered plenty to both parties, and given his start to life in Yorkshire, it is already working out well.
Although their start to the season has been somewhat patchy, Ampadu has stood out as one of their shining lights, with his 7.28 average rating in the league the fifth-best within the squad. Such a fine figure is buoyed by his 85% pass accuracy alongside one key pass, 2.3 tackles and 2.5 clearances per game, via Sofascore.
Farke would rush to laud the man who has already lit up the Championship: “I’m pretty pleased with the signing of Ethan Ampadu. I think today he has showed some glimpses and in the many periods why wanted him so much. He’s a young player with much potential, also more to come, but already an experienced player so he was quite crucial in the first half.”
It seems that a run of games could help the versatile star finally grow into his once-promised potential, as former Northern Ireland international Paul McVeigh once lauded: “Footballing world, take note of this young player. Ethan Ampadu. He’s going to be very special.”
How much did Leeds pay for Ethan Ampadu?
As if his performances alone did not vouch for the coup the Whites earned by signing Ampadu, it is worth outlining just how cheap the deal for the 6-foot maestro was.
After all, with the aforementioned issues in west London, their desperation to sell clearly fed into the cut-price nature of the deal.
Either unaware or uninterested in his future, it was astonishing to see the Stamford Bridge outfit sanction his exit at a mere £7m.
How much was Ethan Ampadu worth at Chelsea?
Given he spent six years in London, it should be no surprise that the value of the former Spezia loanee fluctuated throughout his time there.
Sat at a mere €800k (£689k) in 2017 when he made the move from Exeter City to the Premier League side, leaving the club that handed him a senior debut at just 15 years old, immediately expectations were astronomically high.
Reaching a peak of €17m (£14.6m) in 2022, as per Football Transfers, such a figure has slowly declined as chances have become scarcer. Fortunately, the former England U16s international is already on his way back to such a level since moving to Leeds.
What is Ethan Ampadu’s market value now?
Football Transfers help to outline the growth of such an integral figure for Farke across the three months that the midfielder has been at the club, with their month-by-month expected Transfer Value tracker.
Given that it has once again started on an upward trajectory, the €15.6m (£13.4m) level he has now reached is one only certain to continue soaring with each passing month.
To compare that figure with the initial sum spent to sign Ampadu, and across just two months already his value has risen by a whopping 91%. Come the end of the campaign, it is a truly enthralling prospect to imagine just how high it will have risen.
Why is Ethan Ampadu worth that much?
All the aforementioned glowing testimonies help to emphasise why the Welshman is valued so highly, alongside the figures that showcased a truly bright start to the league season.
However, what has not been noted is his versatility, with the ability to easily slot into centre-back a hugely important factor that will surely aid Farke throughout what promises to be a gruelling year.
In fact, during his most recent loan spell in Serie A, Leeds’ number four would feature predominantly at the back, with his 6.91 average rating the highest in the entire squad. Although they would fall to relegation, the supplementary figures of 1.2 interceptions, 2.1 tackles and three clearances per game (via Sofascore) help suggest that it had nothing to do with the performances of Ampadu.
The hope will be that the fine start to life at Elland Road is one which can be maintained throughout a season where promotion is a must, helping skyrocket that value to new heights.