Gray: Leicester City Perfect For Me
- The 19-year-old joined from Birmingham City on Monday, subject to Premier League and FA clearance
- Gray says conversations with Claudio Ranieri and England Under-20 team-mate Ben Chilwell helped convince him to join
- The winger reveals that playing for a Premier League football club is the realisation a lifelong dream
After becoming Leicester City’s first signing of 2016, new boy Demarai Gray described King Power Stadium as the perfect place for him to take the next step in his footballing career.
At just 19 years old and with more than 70 Championship appearances to his name for Birmingham City, Gray was one of the hottest properties in the Football League, but he was soon convinced to make the switch to Leicester City.
A conversation with Claudio Ranieri, some words of encouragement from England Under-20s team-mate Ben Chilwell and a tour of the Club’s impressive facilities were all key factors in his decision to move, along with the lure of playing in the Barclays Premier League.
“It’s a great Club,” Gray told . “The facilities are great and for a player like me it’s an ideal place for me to improve. Meeting all the staff here, it seems like a nice family place, so I think that’s perfect for me.
“Obviously it’s nice to have such an opportunity and it’s Premier League football. I’m 19 and it’s been my dream to play in the Premier League since I started playing football so I’m very happy to join the Club.
“I’ve been playing football since I was four years old and the Premier League is always where I’ve wanted to get to. Where I am now and this experience has been great and I can’t wait to start and get on the pitch for Leicester.”
Gray will meet his team-mates for the first time on Tuesday morning when he takes part in training. It’s a prospect he’s looking forward to and a situation he’s keen to impress in under the watchful eyes of new boss Ranieri.
He added: “Obviously I’ve got to work hard. It’s back to work for me and hopefully I can impress in the training sessions. As soon as I’m called upon I’ll be ready.
“He (Claudio Ranieri) told me what he thinks of me personally, which is nice to hear and about future plans too, because clearly it’s early stages of my career and I want to develop and reach the top. Working with Ranieri will help me develop and being in the Premier League now is just the step I’ve been waiting for.
“You can see how well the team has been doing this year and I watch a lot of football so I can see that the way Leicester City play suits my style. I think that definitely lured me to the Club and the fact I know a few players like Ben Chilwell, so speaking to them has helped me make my decision. I only hear good things about Leicester and I’m looking forward to starting.
“I can play left or right and sometimes partner the striker if needs be. I like to come in off the left – that’s where I played mainly for Birmingham - and on the right I like to come inside off the flank too. The type of player I am is that I like to link play, have shots on goal and mainly just help the team, which is my job.”
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