Birmingham City have a habit of bringing through some fantastic youth players and Demarai Gray is no exception.
The 18-year-old Englishman is one of the hottest properties outside the top flight at the moment and speculation has been building all through the season, as to where he will be at the end of the summer transfer window.
With clubs like Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Spurs, Aston Villa and Bournemouth all interested in the teen sensation, it leaves one question unanswered still….. Will a move away from Birmingham City actually benefit him?
In my opinion, I personally do not believe that a move to one of the top sides in the Premier League or somebody like Aston Villa and Bournemouth who are expected to be fighting relegation next season would bring the best out of Gray.
Having been with the Blues for his whole playing career, why would he move away? Manager Gary Rowett has stated in several press conferences that the club are in no hurry to sell Gray and they do not need the money as desperately as they have done before.
The resolve that Rowett is talking about was seen in January when the club knocked Bournemouth back a staggering five times with the final bid being £5 million.
It is expected this summer that the club will receive bids of nearly double that amount which could be tempting but like I have said, I personally do not believe that a move away for the Blues would benefit Gray.
Looking at his stats this season, in just over 40 games, he has only scored six goals, three of which came in a 6-1 win over Reading and he has only chipped in with one assist.
Those sort of figures just aren’t good enough which highlights the fact that he still has a lot of progressing to do.
I believe that if he stayed at Birmingham next season, he would double his ability which would make him much more desirable to a Premier League side or possibly even a side abroad like PSV Eindhoven, who are also interested in his services after they lost their star player to Manchester United.
If Birmingham did manage to fight off the interest from the clubs that are interested, it shows just how far they have come in the last two seasons.
After their owner Carson Yeung was sentenced to six years in prison for five counts of money laundering, the club have had to sell their prized assets, including the likes of Curtis Davies, Jordan Mutch, Nathan Redmond and Ben Foster.
However, if they managed to keep hold of Gray, I personally believe that they would be able to help him improve his abilities with the ball far more than any Premier League side would be able to.
With that being said, if an offer of around £10 million came in for him, who’s to say that the club would be able to resist it?
If they did accept it, I can bet that Rowett would want a sell on clause in the contract of around 25% and he would also want Gray back on loan for the season which for me would seem a reasonable expectation.
If those demands were not possible, I do not believe that Birmingham City and Demarai Gray himself would be getting the best deal.
Personally, I believe that Gray is the sort of footballer who needs the ball at his feet to show fans what he can do.
In the Premier League, he just will not have the time to do that which is another reason why I believe he needs to stay with the Blues.
Do you think Demarai Gray should stay with Birmingham City for the 2015-2016 Sky BEt Championship campaign? Let us know down in the comments.