Victor Orta unearthed a diamond for Leeds United when he snapped up teenage full-back Cody Drameh from Fulham’s U21 side in the summer of 2020.
The Whites landed the young defender from the London club for a fee that could reach up to around £1m if all clauses are met in the future, after an initial offer of £400k.
Is Drameh a future star for Leeds?
Drameh quickly established himself as a regular in the U21s as he played 21 Premier League 2 games in the 2020/21 campaign, scoring once and assisting two from right-back.
His form for the youth team was enough to convince Marcelo Bielsa to bring him into the first-team group in 2021/22. He handed the gem three Premier League appearances and started him against Arsenal at Elland Road in December 2021.
Leeds then opted to send him out on loan to play regular first-team football in the second half of the campaign as he joined Cardiff City in the Championship, with Transfermarkt valuing him at £900k at the time.
He averaged a SofaScore rating of 6.92 in 22 appearances as he created four big chances for his teammates and made a whopping 4.8 tackles and interceptions per match. No other Cardiff player managed more than 3.4 tackles and interceptions and this shows that he was a standout, defensively, for the Welsh club.
Former Bluebirds boss Steve Morison heaped praise on the young gem during the season, saying:
“He has been excellent. He was excellent in his first game, he was excellent at Barnsley, it was a right scrap but there were a few things when he was running back and making last-ditch tackles.
“He had a little bit of a down game, the Bristol City game, but outside of that he has been excellent. Having that break in the Liverpool game when he couldn’t play, letting his body catch up on where it needs to be, now he is like a Duracell Bunny, isn’t he? He just keeps going and going.”
His impressive form for Cardiff has led to his Transfermarkt value soaring to £2.7m, a 200% increase on the £900k he was valued at in January 2022.
The 20-year-old has played twice for Jesse Marsch’s Leeds side this season, including starting against Brentford in the Premier League, and will now be hoping to push on to become a regular in the months and years to come.
For now, though, it appears as though Orta has unearthed a new diamond for the club as the gem’s market value has rocketed since his initial move from Fulham in 2020 and he is now starting to showcase his quality at senior level.