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11 goals in 22 appearances but still no first-team football for Kenji Gorre

English Premier League

11 goals in 22 appearances but still no first-team football for Kenji Gorre

The Dutch attacker has been in fine form for Swansea City’s under-23s this season.

The Checkatrade Trophy came to an end at the weekend with Lincoln City beating Shrewsbury 1-0 at Wembley. With the end of the competition also came the announcement of the team of the tournament. Swansea City fans might be interested to know that one of their own was included. Kenji Gorre got the nod on the left-wing after an impressive campaign with the under-23s in the competition. He scored four goals in four games before Swansea’s youngsters were dumped out by Charlton Athletic.

He is one of only two development players in the team of the tournament, along with Chelsea’s talented attacker Callum Hudson-Odoi.

(Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images)

But Gorre is not some teenage prodigy. At 23-years-old he is now at an age where he should be in the Swansea first-team and many fans will be wondering why he isn’t.

The Dutch attacker, who joined the club from Manchester United in 2013, has struggled to find his way into the Swansea first-team this campaign, as he has done for the past few years.

Spells out on loan at ADO Den Haag and Northampton Town have been forgettable but his form with the under-23s this season has been anything but.

His four-in-four goal ratio in the EFL Trophy is also boosted by a stunning season in the Premier League 2.

Gorre has helped his side to the semi-finals of the Premier League 2 Cup and this week the young Swansea side take on Arsenal. A win will see them leapfrog the Gunners who are currently joint-top of the table with Leicester City.

(12 Dec 1999: Dean Gorre of Huddersfield is chased by Danny Murphy of Liverpool during the FA Cup 3rd Round match played at the McAlpine Stadium in Huddersfield, England. Liverpool won the game 2-0. Mandatory Credit: Shaun Botterill /Allsport

The wide-man, who his also eligible to play for England and Curacao, has been pivotal to their form. The 23-year-old, whose father Dean had a successful career with the likes of Ajax, Huddersfield and Barnsley, has scored six goals and contributed three assists in the development league. It makes his final tally for the season so far 11 goals and four assists in just 22 appearances – including his goal against former club Manchester United in the Premier League International Cup.

Yet, Gorre has not appeared in a Swansea City first-team squad since the 1-1 draw with Manchester City in May 2016. Still, his only appearance in a Swansea first-team is the six-minute cameo on the final day of the 2014-15 season against Crystal Palace.

Gorre has proven himself to be a worthy talent this season and certainly deserves a first-team opportunity. But his contract at the Liberty Stadium expires in the summer and it will be interesting to see if he is retained by the Swans.

If he is, then the plan must be to have him playing first-team football in South Wales next season. If not, then plenty of clubs will be scrambling to compete for his signature.

Sports journalist based in Bristol. Everton fan for my sins.

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