Bristol Rovers are set to complete somewhat of a coup by signing Barnsley winger Luke Thomas, according to GloucestershireLive.
The 22-year-old, who was capped twice by England under-20’s in 2019, has endured a tough recent spell having joined the Tykes from Derby County two years ago.
Thomas played 39 times for Barnsley in his debut season but was sparingly used by Valerien Ismael in 2020-21 once he replaced Gerhard Struber at Oakwell, and the lack of opportunities saw Thomas join Ipswich Town on loan for the rest of the season.
After just five appearances though, Thomas cut short that spell in Suffolk due to personal reasons, citing the need for his mental and physical health to be rested as the reason for departing early.
Thomas is seemingly recharged though ahead of the new campaign and he’s set to head closer to home with Bristol Rovers being located less than an hour from his birthplace in Gloucestershire.
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And that may have given the edge to Joey Barton’s side in the race to take him on loan for the upcoming season, as the Gas have defeated League One clubs and also AS Nancy in France – which seems like a random link but they are managed by former Barnsley boss Daniel Stendel, the man who took Thomas to south Yorkshire initially.
Considering Thomas was a regular in the Championship two years ago and is still young, this seems like a really good signing for a League Two club.
Obviously he had his issues a few months ago which led to his early Ipswich exit, but there’s no doubt that Thomas is still a talent and the fact that League One clubs wanted him shows how much of a coup this will be for Rovers.
But it seems as though location has come first and being closer to home will no doubt bring the best out of Thomas – he could really prove a class apart in the fourth tier should Rovers get the deal done.