Journalist and YouTuber Conor McGilligan has slammed John McGinn for his ‘reckless’ challenge on Leeds United’s Archie Gray.
The 16-year-old Whites starlet had to be stretchered out of the club’s pre-season friendly after 71 minutes as a result of a heavy challenge from the Aston Villa midfielder.
McGinn followed through on the ball and caught the youngster around the ankle with his studs, receiving a yellow card, while Gray was carried off with a leg brace on his right foot.
Leeds boss Jesse Marsch said the staff were hopeful that nothing was broken and that it was only an ankle sprain – much to the relief of McGilligan, who held real fear for one of the side’s up-and-coming talents.
Speaking on the One Leeds Fan Channel, he said:
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“It doesn’t matter how old you are, but I think in a friendly, what John McGinn then did was pretty horrendous. He was looking the other way and stamped on Archie Gray.
“Was clearly going for the ball, but he completely missed it and almost lent in onto Archie Gray’s ankle.
“I just thought there was absolutely no need for it, studs-up, looked reckless and it’s a friendly and Archie Gray had to be taken off – and thank god – it looks like it’s just a sprained ankle, but I’ll tell you what, that could have been a lot worse, a hell of a lot worse.”
TIF Thoughts on Gray and Leeds United…
This unspoken rivalry and bad blood that appears to exist between the Villans and Leeds spilled onto Australian turf this time, but Marsch will be hopeful Gray makes a speedy recovery.
The highly rated grandson of former Leeds player Frank has emerged from the academy at Thorp Arch in recent months to seize a place on the club’s pre-season tour down under.
The attacking midfielder only turned 16 back in March but has made 13 appearances in the Premier League 2, scoring one goal and creating another.
His reputation is seemingly soaring given he was credited with a seat on the plane and is a name that we could see more over this forthcoming season should his injury not derail his progress.