Five players Daniel Farke could build Leeds United a Premier League squad around

Daniel Farke with Archie Gray
Leeds United manager Daniel Farke shakes hands with Archie Gray. -Credit:George Wood/Getty Images

Leeds United only have a slim chance of automatic promotion but will still fancy their chances of an instant return to the Premier League - and the riches that top-flight football brings - with Daniel Farke and his recruitment team planning for all scenarios. Leeds are now in a two-way shootout for Championship automatic promotion alongside Ipswich Town.

With one eye on the transfer market, all three clubs will have a double list for possible targets, while Leeds could look to build on their (hopefully) Premier League squad around five impressive players currently under contract at Elland Road. Here, we provide a run down on that quintet and where they might fit into Farke's plans;

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Illan Meslier: The 24-year-old goalkeeper was first choice for Leeds in the Premier League before and, should he stay put at Elland Road amid reported interest in his services, you would expect him to hold similar status. Meslier cost €6.5million from FC Lorient in 2020 and has been linked with the great (and good) across Europe. With more clean sheets than any other Championship stopper this season (19), the Frenchman has proven that he belongs at the top level and Leeds are mightily glad they have him.

Archie Gray: It speaks volumes for the regard in which Gray is held at Elland Road and beyond that he has been handed such a prominent role in this promotion assault. The highly-rated teenager only turned 18 last month, but has already totted-up 47 senior games for the Whites with 42 coming in the Championship this season. Versatile, talented and with bags of potential, Leeds have a real star-in-the-making on their hands with an important place for him in the Premier League a certainty if possible suitors are kept at bay.

Ethan Ampadu: Winning his 50th cap for Wales during the international break, it seems unthinkable that former Chelsea prospect Ampadu is still only 23-years-old. He has been around the block with loan spells in Germany and Italy bookmarking his time at Stamford Bridge, but at Elland Road he might have finally find a permanent home. His input - coming up 4,000 minutes as a Championship ever-present this season - underlines his worth.

Crysencio Summerville: Speculation around his future remains at fever pitch and it would be difficult to imagine Summerville staying put with Leeds next season if the worst happens and they miss out on promotion. Keeping it positive, though, the 19 goals and nine assists he has accumulated in the Championship - from 41 matches - shows there is a Premier League player in wait. However, the fleet-footed Dutchman, 22, is certain to have interest in him when the market reopens with Liverpool, Newcastle and Tottenham mooted to be lurking.

Georginio Rutter: Copy and paste from above. Rutter, 22, has been provider-in-chief for Leeds this season with a staggering 17 assists to his name from 43 matches. The club are at least protected with four years left to run on his contract, but money talks and everyone has their price to coin two footballing cliches. Having cost €34million from Hoffenheim 18 months ago, Leeds either have another top-flight star or profitable asset to sell.