Luke Amos: What are his strengths and why do QPR want him so much?
QPR are looking to finalise a deal to sign Luke Amos from Tottenham.
Amos spent last season on loan at Loftus Road and is expected to be a Rangers player by the time the squad report back for pre-season training next week.
He had his moments last term but struggled for fitness and form during much of his loan spell.
So why is R’s boss Mark Warburton keen to sign him on a permanent deal?
The price is right for QPR – and so is Amos’ age
Amos has a year remaining on his Tottenham contract and the north London club are ready to let him leave for a modest fee.
Rangers therefore see the deal as making financial sense, largely because of his development potential.
Amos is 23 and Warburton regards him as a young player of real promise, despite an up-and-down season in west London.
The age, price, potential – and point to prove after being allowed to leave Spurs – would mean Amos fits the bill in terms of the kind of players QPR are looking to recruit.
Can do better
There’s a feeling that Amos is capable of much more than he showed during his time on loan.
That loan move came after he had just recovered from a long-term knee injury.
Amos had missed almost all of the previous season, having suffered cruciate damage in an Under-23s game just weeks after his first-team debut.
The injury coming so soon after his first – and what looks like proving to be his only – senior appearance for Spurs was a cruel blow.
From QPR’s point of view, though, it might turn out to be a twist of circumstance which ultimately worked in their favour.
What are his strengths?
This is an understandable question to ask based on Amos’ somewhat powder puff performances in a Rangers shirt.
Critics might well ask what his stand-out attributes are. What is he particularly good at?
It could also be argued that Amos is an example of the kind of youngsters being bred at many clubs these days; technically sound, but lightweight, not cut out for senior-level football and, frankly, easy to play against.
The lightweight label is probably justified – but also linked to the issue of Amos’ possible development potential.
His highlights for QPR generally involved under-the-radar defensive work, while his lowlights tended to occur in the final third of the pitch – such as an appalling miss in the home defeat against Fulham.
He popped up in those advanced areas fairly frequently for Rangers but prior to joining them had mostly operated in a deeper role, sat in front of a back three or four.
He is much more comfortable in that role and it might well be one he settles into in the future.
Amos’ main strengths, then, include his reading of the game and ability to pick simple but effective passes.
This could make him a key player for Warburton given the manager’s desire to play a possession-based game with an emphasis on building from the back.
Amos in a sitting role would enable Rangers’ centre-backs to split and full-backs to push forward.
That’s the theory. In practice, that role in the Championship would be a demanding one and the ‘lightweight’ Amos might well need to develop physically before being fully cut out for it.
In time, though, the hope would be that he evolves into the kind of player – and sellable asset – Warburton believes Amos can be.