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According to a report from the Independent, Premier League side Swansea City are leading the chase to sign young attacker George Thomas from Coventry City in the summer.
The 20-year old Thomas, who was part of the Wales U-20 team in the recently concluded 2017 Toulon Tournament, has gathered a lot of suitors, with the likes of Leicester City, Newcastle United and Brighton & Hove Albion also keen on him, according to the report.
Thomas had a brilliant 2016/17 campaign with the Sky Blues as he finished with an exceptional tally of 9 goals and 2 assists from all competitions. Having followed it up with a strong showing in the Toulon Tournament, he is set to earn his big move to a big club, with Swansea said to be in the pole position to sign him.
Ahead of his move to the Welsh outfit, let’s take a closer look at who George Thomas is and why Swansea are so keen on him.
Born in Leicester, England, on 24 March 1997, Thomas started off with the Coventry City academy and having come through the ranks, he broke into the first team in the 2013/14 season, making his debut on 28 January 2014, making his League One debut in a 2-0 loss against Leyton Orient. He did not feature again that season.
In the 2014/15 season, he was afforded 7 matches with the senior team and having started off well in the 2015/16 campaign, he was shipped out on a one-month loan to League Two outfit Yeovil Town in October 2015, for whom he made 5 appearances and registered one assist. Upon his return, he appeared sparsely for the Sky Blues and finished with just 9 appearances.
It was the 2016/17 season where he really burst onto the scenes for Coventry. Having hardly featured up until October, he started getting regular playing time and he scored his first goal for the club in an EFL Trophy tie against Wycombe Wanderers.
He went onto score once again, against the same opposition in the semi-finals of the EFL Trophy, which his team won 2-1, to go through to the finals for the first time since 1987. He was once again the hero for Coventry in the finals, as he scored a sublime second goal against Oxford United, to lead his team to a 2-1 win, handing them the trophy. He finished the season with 9 goals and 2 assists from 36 games across all competitions.
Thomas received his first international call-up for the Wales U17 side in April 2013 and he made his debut against Northern Ireland U17 on 11 April 2013. He played 13 times for the U17s, scoring on 5 occasions. He made his U19 debut in September 2014 and has appeared on 8 occasions, netting 3 goals.
In May this year, he was selected for the Wales U20 team to participate in the 2017 Toulon Tournament. He started off with a bang scoring twice in a 2-2 draw against Ivory Coast. Wales crashed out in the group stages, and Thomas finished with 2 goals from 3 appearances.
A centre-forward primarily, who excels playing as an auxiliary striker, Thomas can also play as an attacking midfielder or out wide on the right flank.
Technically endowed, the 20-year old possesses great first touch, and has shown composure and intelligence in and around the penalty box. What makes him stand out at such a young age is his work ethic and the enthusiasm that he shows when on the pitch.
Always willing to contribute for his team’s cause in any possible way, he can stick it out against physical defenders and can dish out a few tackles too. With the right guidance, there are good chances that he would turn out to be a star in the future.
Thomas’ contract with Coventry expired on 30 June 2017 and he is now a free agent. Having impressed heavily last season and the Toulon Tournament, there are no shortage of interested parties for his services.
With Swansea leading the chase for the forward, a move to the Liberty seems imminent and the Swans will have to pay a nominal £300,000 plus add-ons as a compensation fee to Coventry.