Farke’s Cancelo-esque star has seen his value rise by 1876%

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Leeds United have endured a rough start to the new Championship campaign, although their frustrating results are seemingly born of the tumultuous summer that Daniel Farke was forced to oversee.

With many of their stars from the previous term jumping ship, the German manager had to plug gaps in key areas and contend with the departure of 15 senior players, many of whom have left on loan and therefore garnered no fee in return.

Therefore, with just one league win across five games played, it seems that the international break came at the perfect time to allow them to realign themselves and refocus on the task at hand. After all, fans will remain quietly confident that the quality is in place to push for a promotion this season.

Many of their summer signings have proven instantly successful, with Ethan Ampadu, Joel Piroe and Joe Rodon bolstering in areas of importance, whilst the likes of Glen Kamara and Djed Spence are poised to have a big impact soon.


However, it could be argued that the foundation for a potential Premier League return was already in place with those they retained, as not every star sought to escape at the first time of asking.

Many of their established players remain, and the youth that continues to develop at Thorp Arch remains stellar. In fact, it is one of these academy graduates, a certain Jamie Shackleton, who could make all the difference in this campaign.

How good is Jamie Shackleton?

Whilst some might look to Joe Gelhardt to be the answer to their striking woes, or implore Charlie Cresswell to start after his fine loan spell with Millwall, it is in fact another name who has truly begun to stake his claim as a quietly brilliant member of the squad.

Shackleton, who too enjoyed the last year with the centre-back in east London, has seemingly returned this summer with a real point to prove.

The 23-year-old was hardly amazing for the Lions, but since he was handed his chance to impress by Farke, he has not looked back.

With a preference to play in midfield, it is interesting that the bulk of his appearances have come as part of the backline, deputising at both right and left-back across his six appearances in all competitions. It’s not an unfamiliar role, however, with Marcelo Bielsa also utilising Shackleton at full-back.

His history in a role naturally far more creative than right or left-back has helped him bring a unique profile to the role, with his attacking impetus from deep having shone in the Championship especially.

Boasting a 6.95 average rating, the peak of his performances thus far actually came in their most recent 0-0 draw with Sheffield Wednesday, where he was truly at his creative best despite his side’s inability to find the net. Accurate with 65 of his 73 attempted passes, he wove three key passes into this economical showing, whilst also chipping in with two tackles and one clearance, via Sofascore.

Such an ability to shine from defence is unsurprisingly going to draw parallels with Joao Cancelo, who arguably transformed what it meant to be a full-back under Pep Guardiola.

The peak of his powers came during the 2021/22 season, where the Portugal international maintained a 7.33 average rating in the Premier League, buoyed by his eight goal contributions, 85% pass accuracy, 1.1 key passes and 2.3 tackles per game, via Sofascore.

Joao Cancelo’s Premier League Seasons

Average Rating

Goal Contributions

2022/23 (Manchester City)



2021/22 (Manchester City)



2020/21 (Manchester City)



2019/20 (Manchester City)



All stats via Sofascore

Former Manchester City star Nigel de Jong has even noted: “We can have a healthy discussion and debate on who is the best right-back in the world and Cancelo is certainly up there for me. It’s not only his versatility but also the fact he is as strong defensively as any right-back or left-back in the world”.

Although his talents are a far cry from young Shackleton’s, the hope will be that he can continue his growth in a new role, with the lofty ambition to one day surpass the levels set by the on-loan Barcelona star.

How much was Jamie Shackleton worth five years ago?

Having made his debut as a fresh-faced 18-year-old under Bielsa, Shackleton’s progression has been steady if unspectacular since that Championship clash back in 2018.

Unsurprisingly, given how unknown the midfielder was, Transfermarkt could hardly merit handing him a lofty market valuation no matter how highly rated he was around Elland Road.

In fact, the Argentinian tactician even noted at the time: “Jamie has a maturity which does not correspond to his age. He plays like a veteran but he’s only 19. He can attack by surprise, he defends well and when he moves he has explosive movements. With these kind of movements he can surprise his opponent and he looks for space at the right time.”

However, this meant little to the rest of the world, and as such a lowly €100k (£86k) figure was placed beside him.

What is Jamie Shackleton’s market value now?

Such humble beginnings make his growth even more exceptional though, with his fine start to the season certain to help his value to soar further.

Already having seen it crack €2m (£1.7m) marks a sharp upturn though, with that five-year period having overseen a mouth-watering rise of 1,876%.


Seeing as that came across 85 stuttered senior appearances, earned over numerous years, a solid run in the side now could help him take his career to new heights, adding even more millions onto his already increasing valuation.

Why is Shackleton worth that much?

Shackleton’s loan spell with Millwall will have done his transfer value wonders, as it finally allowed him to hold down a consistent starting spot, even if it meant dropping down into the Championship.

Had he engineered their promotion too, which they came close to achieving as they narrowly missed out on the final playoff spot, it is certain that he would be worth even more.

The youngster made 37 total appearances during his time at The Den, with his exploits lauded by manager Gary Rowett after standing in for Billy Mitchell: “The biggest compliment I can pay Shacks, and it is no disrespect to Billy, is that we didn’t miss Billy. He’s been such a big player for us that I felt we would. It is a big blow, however Shacks was absolutely outstanding alongside Sav, who was really good as well.”


Should the £1.5k-per-week ace continue his growth by maintaining his current level of performance, he could very well be Farke’s answer to Cancelo, spearheading much of their creativity from deep and helping engineer a speedy top-flight return.

#Farkes #Canceloesque #star #rise

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