At the age of 22, Emre Mor was supposed to be blooming into the most talented Turkish footballer of his generation, leading his nation into Euro 2020 and establishing himself at the top of the European game.
Instead, he is out of favour, out of sorts and, soon rather than later, he will be out of his club too.
A one-time wonderkid who joined Borussia Dortmund as a fresh-faced, wide-eyed teen became Celta Vigo’s second-most expensive player ever as recently as 2017. But, eight starts, two assists and one La Liga goal later, his £11 million price-tag has become a millstone around Celta’s neck.
A loan spell at Galatasaray, and a subsequent and somewhat inevitable falling out with legendary coach Fatih Terim, means it is not only Celta who want to get rid of this prancing, posturing playmaker.
Leeds United have been linked, with Haberler claiming that Mor would jump at the chance to join the Premier League chasing Whites. But is a player with such emotional baggage worth the hassle?
Brentford clearly don’t think so. According to BT, Thomas Frank’s buzzing Bees were interested in offering Mor (another) second chance via a January move to Griffin Park. But due to some rather unspecified ‘problems’, which appear to be the result of the winger’s rather difficult personality, Brentford have decided to break off the deal.
Leeds, if they do their research, might soon take a similar route.
'One trick pony'
“Emre Mor has a lot of technical ability but a very low football IQ, combined with being a bit of a one-trick pony. He’s fast, he can dribble, but that’s it,” Turkish football expert Kaan Bayazit tells HITC.
“He doesn’t have a consistent cross or shot so, despite his wonderkid status from a few years back, he doesn’t really offer much.
An exasperated Bayazit points out that Galatasaray have an option to sign Mor permanently for a fee of £6.8 million. But it seems there is more chance of the Bosporus freezing over in mid-August than the Danish-born Turk staying in Istanbul beyond this season.
The Super Lig champions want him, and his substantial pay packet, off the wage bill as soon as possible.
“He’s lazy. It makes no sense to sign him,” says Bayazit, who believes Emre Kilinc of Sivasspor would represent a more astute investment for Championship clubs looking for a tricky winger.
“If you ask others, they may tell you; ‘oh well, he is so talented and with the right coach blah blah blah’. But I’ve seen kids like this plenty of times and they never amount to anything.”
Given that Marcelo Bielsa demands blood, sweat and tears from every single member of his Leeds United squad, exalting the imperfect yet industrious Gianni Alioski while dumping the mercurial yet lethargic Samu Saiz, it is hard to think of a man less suited to life at Elland Road than Emre Mor.
"Mor can become a special player. He's working diligently and we're giving him all the support. He's an incredible talent,” Thomas Tuchel told Goal when Mor landed at Borussia Dortmund, pulling on the famous number nine shirt at the Westfalenstadion.
That was just 2016. But it feels like a million years ago.
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